New solar power installations in the UK have halved for the second consecutive year, according to a new report.
Furthermore, figures from Europe’s solar trade body show that the UK’s downward trend in new solar installations have caused overall EU solar growth to stagnate.
SolarPowerEurope attributes the decline to the UK’s ‘solar exit’ in 2016 when the Government reduced subsidies for householders installing rooftop solar panels.
The UK is the slowest growing market among the top 20 global photovoltaic (PV) markets, expected to add just 2.1GW until 2022.
Aside from the UK, most of the largest global PV markets are likely to see two-digit compound annual growth rates until 2022. In particular, Egypt and Saudi Arabia are expected to grow by over 100 per cent.
Despite 21 of the 28 European Union (EU) markets adding more solar in 2017 than the previous year, the overall market performance is still sluggish.
Among the 28 EU members, there was hardly any overall growth. The countries added just 5.91GW in 2017, compared to 5.89GW in 2016.
Responding to the figures, campaign group Greenpeace called on the UK Government to act now by redirecting political support towards clean energy technology.
“Just as they did with onshore wind power, the government has once again identified a clean energy technology destined to dominate the twenty first century, and are doing everything in their power to prevent the UK from benefiting,” said Kate Blagojevic, head of Energy at Greenpeace UK.
“In both cases they have successfully crushed young, growing industries with rapidly shrinking costs, and redirected their political and financial support to nuclear, an old, shrinking industry with rapidly growing costs. Blocking some of the most promising technologies and subsidising the biggest failures is about as far as you can get from an economically rational energy policy, and that’s what Britain needs now.”