Concerns have been raised by renewables certification body MCS about the decision by Octopus Energy to accept solar installations on their Smart Export Guarantee tariffs without MCS accreditation.

There is a skills shortage in the solar installations sector in the UK currently, with not enough MCS accredited installers to meet demand. Some electricians welcomed the news, though MCS warned that it was a step in the wrong direction.

Panels being installed for Dr KS, St Albans (AL2), Herts.

Panels being installed for Dr KS, St Albans (AL2), Herts.

Ian Rippin, MCS’ chief executive, said: “Having seen a flurry of social media comments and increasing confusion and worry relating to the implications of a change to the Octopus terms and conditions for their customers to access the Smart Export Guarantee, I wanted to express my concern on behalf of installers, manufacturers and consumers.”

“Octopus removing the government-advised requirement for MCS certification as a prerequisite for accessing their export tariff puts the burden of assessing solar installations against industry standards on to homeowners and business owners,” Rippin said, adding that “the industry cannot expect the average customer to have the skillset and knowledge to determine whether their system is safe, efficient, and meets industry standards.”

Rippin said he had reached out to Octopus “to better understand their intentions, underlining the importance of quality standards and protections. I await their response.”

Read more: Current+

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