Payback periods as low as six years on new rooftop solar means up to 19 years of free power now for property owners who install panels, academics at the Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit have calculated.

With UK rooftop installations now running at a reported 8,000 per month, consumers adopting PV are responding rationally to price signals from the enduring price crisis, researchers Gareth Redmond-King and Matt Williams say in a new ECIU report.

At the same time, increasing panel efficiencies mean the levelised lifetime cost of solar power from farms has dropped to as little as £54/MWh, the pair note.  That’s a figure with which gas-generated power increasingly cannot compete.

Bird exclusion mesh (Image: Tanjent Energy)

Bird exclusion mesh (Image: Tanjent Energy)

Thermal stations will still in 2025 be supplying power at wholesale prices of £85 per MWh, say the ECIU duo, citing D-BEIS analysis from 2020.

Since the Ukraine crisis, traders have put the cost for gas-generated power as high as £200/MWh, in ‘day ahead’ prices, Redmond-King and Williams observe.

Co-locating batteries next to ground-mounted arrays on farms means sun-generated power is already starting to flow after dark into UK homes and businesses, the ECIU researchers assert.

By 2026, solar electricity sourced from batteries will be delivered at prices equivalent to £66/MWh on a levelised lifetime cost basis, the unit predicts.

Read more: theenergyst

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