Solar PV rooftop panels – the way forward
Most people now understand the basics of generating electricity from Solar PV (PhotoVoltaic) panels, but the enormous untapped potential that rooftop Solar PV panels represent for meeting carbon reduction targets in the UK is less widely understood. Rooftop solar panels on existing or new build rooftops are a simple, low impact method of generating electricity and not to be compared with the creation of solar ‘farms’ on vital farmland. Solar ‘farms’ require substantial amounts of new distribution infrastructure and once the carbon costs of creating and running them are taken into account, provide little gain to the cause of alternative energy generation.
The Campaign for the Preservation of Rural England (CPRE) has recently carried out extensive research which shows that significant proportions of the UK’s energy needs could be provided by rooftop SolarPV installations and air source heat pumps. These are particularly attractive alternatives to fossil fuels and centralised electricity generation as now new building would be required, no more vital farmland used up for solar farms and air source heat pumps do not require large gardens or underground installations – any residential home can benefit from both.
The CPRE found that:
• The average household rooftop solar installation saves 1 ton of carbon per year
• 60% of the UK’senergy needs could be provided by Solar PV rooftop installations, when taking into account all the existing potential of residential properties and flat-roofed commercial buildings.
• Rooftop solar panels and heat pumps saved German, Spanish and Italian households up to 84% on their heating and energy bills in 2022.
• In the UK that’s would amount to £2,100 off an average annual energy bill!
• Commercial or residential rooftop solar schemes can be installed much faster than ground-mounted schemes as there is very little in the way of new infrastructure required.
• Cambridge City Councillors recently approved an application to install almost 500 solar panels on the lead roof of the 15th Century King’s College Chapel in Cambridge, showing that carefully designed and installed Solar PV panels can be acceptable on even the most architecturally sensitive buildings.
• If we don’t use our rooftops for solar panels when it comes to meeting our (rightfully) ambitious national solar energy targets, we run the risk of allowing 180,000 hectares of land to be taken up by solar panels – that’s an area the size of Greater London.
• The UK’s largest rooftop solar scheme is in Hull and covers an incredible 34,980 square metres – Over twice the size of Lake Windermere.
• Installing solar panels on new buildings and over car parks could deliver 31GW of electricity generating capacity – that’s nearly as much as 10 new nuclear power stations.
• Despite the fact that using UK warehousing roof space for solar panels could double UK solar PV capacity alone, we are far from realising this potential – only 5% of warehouses have solar panels. There are very obvious benefits for UK businesses in terms of reduced energy costs and carbon footprints, as well as making real contributions towards meeting the nation’s environmental targets.
Property 360 is committed to improving the environmental performance of our customers’ properties, both residential and commercial and always happy to discuss potential costs and savings from a combination of air source heat pumps and rooftop Solar PV panels. If your business has offices or warehouses with extensive flat roof space you might be amazed at how much your energy costs could be reduced, surprisingly quickly and easily.
Tried, tested & Trusted
Property360 offer an accurate initial design process from experienced specialists who have been reliably delivering all types of complex construction projects for over a decade. If you are considering a solar PV installation, whether it be residential in-roof, surface mounted or commercial, and need some genuine advice, get in touch today and we would be happy to discuss the options available to you.