According to the latest weekly analysis by NPD Solarbuzz on UK PV market deployment, the UK’s cumulative capacity has now reached 5GW. This makes the UK only the sixth country to have more than 5GW capacity. Germany remains the undisputed leader with more than 36GW. China, Japan, Italy and the US each have more than 10GW installed. So how did this happen:
1) The coalition government inherited a Labour conceived feed-in tariff (FiT) scheme that was expected to be strong on green-propaganda messaging, but somewhat thin on deployment. The FiT rate turned out to be among the most lucrative offered to any PV industry.
2) The timescale over which global PV pricing plummeted in 2012 was an order of magnitude quicker than the government could react with meaningful policy adjustments.
3) Almost nothing happened in the solar PV industry before 2010 in the UK.
4) No-one had imagined that ROCs would, or could, or should be used for solar.
5) Lightsource Renewable Energy came into existence and enacted a business model that had not been seen before in the UK.