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Solar power in the UK - Statistics & Facts

Solar photovoltaic power is a renewable energy that utilizes sunlight in order to generate heat and electricity. The system is comprised of one or multiple solar panels, in turn made up of solar photovoltaic cells, and a solar inverter. Solar panels are either rooftop fitted or ground mounted and a whole plant may range in size from small-scale residential to utility-scale power stations, making this renewable energy particularly attractive to small homeowners.
Policy schemes introduced by the British government, like the Feed-in Tariff, which ran from April 2010 to March 2019, are intended to encourage investments not only by supplying companies, but also individual households. Until March 2019, the majority of installed solar PV capacity under the Feed-in Tariff were either newly built or retrofit plants of a size less than four kilowatts. The scheme was a major influence on the successful spread of solar power plants across the country. In the two years between 2009 and 2011 when it was first made available, the number of solar PV sites grew 52-fold, reflecting widespread support of the energy type among the public.

Since 2004, electricity and heat production from photovoltaics in the United Kingdom increased every year, reaching 12,857 gigawatt hours in 2018. Production is expected to peak in the early 2030s, when many of the solar panels installed during the boom will reach the end of their lifecycle.

England accounts by far for the largest share of solar capacity in the UK, with 11,387 megawatts installed at of 2018.


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