Feed-in Tariff Has Ended
It's official, as of the 31st March 2019, the Feed-in Tariff (FiT) has come to an end.
The FiT was a government scheme which paid homeowners and businesses for generating their own electricity through renewable technologies such as solar PV and wind power.
With no other scheme currently lined up to take its place, only those already receiving FiT payments will be able to benefit from the now-closed scheme.
The scheme was first introduced in 2010, when the cost of solar PV installation was much higher, to encourage more homeowners and businesses to invest in renewable technology and help to reduce the UK's reliance on fossil fuels.
Why has the FiT Rate Ended?
When the FiT scheme began, the government estimated that around 750,000 eligible installations would take place by 2020. However, in 2015 the scheme was found to be more effective than anticipated, and had reached 730,000 installations.
This placed a strain on the scheme's budget and, as well as this, the FiT was hit by funding cuts of around 65%. So, on the 19th July 2018, the government confirmed that the Feed-in Tariff would close on the 31st March 2019.
Is Anything Taking its Place?
The Smart Export Guarantee has been announced by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) as a possible replacement for the export tariff.
Under this guarantee, small-scale energy generators, including homeowners and businesses, would be paid for the energy exported to the electricity grid from their solar panels by larger energy suppliers.
Should this go ahead, it will see large energy suppliers (defined as any energy supplier with 250,000+ customers) pay those generating energy with solar panels for every kWh ( kilowatt-hour) sent to the National Grid. Rather than the government setting this price, it will be determined by each individual energy supplier.