How does the solar subsidy work?
Solar panels save the typical home £90-£180/year in electricity. But the real boon's that the Government guaranteed for 25 years you'd get a high 'feed-in tariff', ie, be PAID to generate energy, even if you use it yourself, at over 3x what we pay. So on £10,000 panels, you could have earned £1,000+/year for 25 years.
But in Oct the Government announced the rate would soon be more than halved for new sign-ups.
The Government lost its appeal
The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) planned to halve the feed-in tariff for anyone who installed and registered after 12 Dec 2011, even though the consultation on the plans ran until 23 Dec. The Court of Appeal upheld a High Court ruling that these ‘retrospective’ cuts were unlawful.
This meant homeowners who get panels up and running before 3 Mar could lock in the higher payments for 25 years.
You put solar panels on the roof to generate energy from the sun. There are two types of panel: solar photovoltaic (PV), which generate electricity and solar thermal, which heat water. This guide focuses on solar PV.
"Hang on, we don't live in California" may be your first thought. Yet solar panels don't need sunshine to work, just daylight, so you can still generate some electricity on gloomy days – important in a country with weather as dull as watching Steve Davis sleep.
PV roof tiles convert the light into electricity, which you can use to power your home during daylight hours. Any energy you don't use is pumped back to the grid. If you use more than the panels generate, the excess comes off the grid, exactly as it did before the panels were fitted.
In the winter, when solar power is less, you'll take more power from the grid. It's a good idea to set appliances to run while it's light outside, staggering them to max the savings. For tons more top tips from solar nerds, read the forum's Make the most of solar panels thread.
Are solar panels worth it? Many consumers are wondering whether or not the cost of a photovoltaic roof system is reasonable. Getting a simple yes or no doesn’t tell the whole story, as the answer depends on the buyer, upfront money and the proposed unit. There are many variables that decide the cost effectiveness of a PV array, but the buyer is in control of these, making a system within easy grasp of any budget.
The benefits of ownership are lower utility bills and energy self-reliance. Owning a PV array of any size will prove to be beneficial. A smaller unit may only lower utility bills a modest amount, but there is a great deal of freedom that comes with the unit. A larger setup can make the homeowner money every month if the system is tied into the power grid. The provider will pay the property owner for any excess energy supplied back to the company.
So, are solar panels worth it? One consideration when deciding the answer is the size of the photovoltaic system. The larger the initial setup, the higher the price. When the home’s needs are minimal, the size of the PV array is smaller, meaning less of an investment. The right PV system will be custom designed for the property, and this is important, as it will reduce waste and maximize efficiency.
Another consideration a consumer may face is the size of the budget. Fortunately, property owners can usually find a system that can fit into any sized budget. Even purchasing a single PV array when the cash flow allows gets the homeowner going down the right path. The entire system is buildable over time as money permits. Finding a reputable provider and installer is the best way to build a system because a single provider gives uniform service and streamlined business dealings.
The home’s location is not as important as it once was. These days, an installer can overcome virtually any obstacle when deciding the best place for a PV array. Are solar panels worth it? There is little doubt that a high quality photovoltaic system custom designed for a specific property is a worthwhile investment. Even if the consumer lives in the northern states, there are ways to guarantee a successful install, giving the buyer the advantages that come with ownership.
Each solar panel installation is as unique as the property it’s being attached to. A careful inspection by a trained professional is a must to get the ideal combination. The installer will answer questions and help the buyer decide, “Are solar panels worth it for me?” The initial investment is not prohibitively expensive. Tax rebates, credits and other incentives assist the homeowner in securing the unit without spending too much cash. There are programs offered by many financial institutes that help the purchaser receive loans with low interest rates and no money down.
What's in it for you?
Done, right solar panels save you cash. You save in two ways:
Electricity bill savings. The Energy Saving Trust (EST) estimates a typical 2.9kWp system can knock £90 to £180 off a family's bills, depending on system size, electricity use, whether you're at home during the day and other factors.
While solar panels can produce 50% of a home's electricity, often much of this gets pumped back to the grid. If energy prices rise significantly over 25 years as they are predicted to, you'll save more.
Feed-in tariff payments. Back in 2010 the Government ditched grants for solar panels and replaced them with a scheme that pays for all the solar energy you produce, even if you use it yourself.
Black Carbon More Important to Climate & Melting Ice than CO2?
A new and detailed study published in the Journal of Geophysical Research - Atmospheres, reveals that black carbon and black soot are far more important to global climate than had been previously admitted by most leading climatologists.
More on the implications of this report from WattsupWithThat and NextBigFuture.
It is likely that black soot and black carbon are far more responsible for melting glaciers and polar ice than is CO2 -- although the largest cause of melting polar ice and glaciers is natural variation in chaotic climate cycles and natural variation of winds and ocean currents.
But if polar bears needed to blame one particular thing for being forced to swim longer distances in a bad year, they should probably blame black soot from China and India.
Other significant anthropogenic influences of climate besides black soot include land use changes, shown in the image above. Over the long run, both land use changes and black soot emissions are likely to have far greater effects on glacial and polar ice than CO2. Why?
For one thing, we can do more about black carbon emissions than we can about CO2 emissions. For another, there are several powerful negative feedback apparati in nature that compensate for anthropogenic CO2 production. That is not nearly the case for black soot production. For yet another, the very wide range of estimated CO2 sensitivity on climate forcing as much as tells you that scientists have not got a precise handle on the actual importance of CO2 on climate.
As you can see from the graphic above, global temperatures have been stuck on a plateau -- at the same time that atmospheric CO2 levels (and climate model temperature predictions) have been rising. The perceived disconnect between atmospheric CO2 and global temperatures may be exaggerated by natural climate cycles, of course.
But if you add the combined anthropogenic climatic effects of CO2, black soot, and land use changes together, you have to wonder what kind of natural cycles would be necessary to bring "global warming" to such a screeching halt?
More on the AGU study:
The study, a four-year, 232-page effort, led by the International Global Atmospheric Chemistry (IGAC) Project, is likely to guide research efforts, climate modeling, and policy for years to come, the authors and other scientists familiar with the paper said.
The report’s best estimate of direct climate influence by black carbon is about a factor of two higher than most previous work. This includes the estimates in the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment, which were based on the best available evidence and analysis at that time.
Scientists have spent the years since the last IPCC assessment improving estimates, but the new assessment notes that emissions in some regions are probably higher than estimated. This is consistent with other research that also hinted at significant under-estimates in some regions’ black carbon emissions.
The results indicate that there may be a greater potential to curb warming by reducing black carbon emissions than previously thought. _GCC
Climatology is still just a baby science -- not ready for prime time. And yet the IPCC wants to control the redistribution of $trillions worth of resources from the developed world to the emerging and third worlds. Purely as a humanitarian gesture, no doubt. After all, who would want the hassle of channeling all of those trillions of dollars, if they did not have the best interests of humanity at heart?
A sober reminder about the chaotic underlying nature of climate:
A paper titled "Global Warming: A Geological Perspective," published in Environmental Geosciences, and summarized below in Arizona Geology, should be required reading for all climate scientists. The paper notes that if
"the temperature increase during the past 130 years reflects recovery from the Little Ice Age, it is not unreasonable to expect the temperature to rise another 2 to 2.5 degrees Celsius to a level comparable to that of the Medieval Warm Period about 800 years ago"
"Climatic changes measured during the last 100 years are not unique or even unusual when compared with the frequency, rate, and magnitude of changes that have taken place since the beginning of the Holocene Epoch. Recent fluctuations in temperature, both upward and downward, are well within the limits observed in nature prior to human influence."
Sadly, most climate scientists fail to study or understand the geologic history of climate, which has led to countless false claims that today's climate is unnatural, extreme, unusual, or unprecedented. __ Source __ via __ GWPF
Summary paper PDF with more
Note that the paper referred to above was published in 1999 in Environment Geosciences, at the peak of confidence in catastrophic global warming. If the words were true then, they are triply true now that temperature trends have flattened, and multiple causes of warming unrelated to CO2 have been described and verified.
Popular climate alarmism and CO2 hysteria resemble the mood manipulation one sees in Hollywood blockbusters, where the soundtrack works together with scripting, acting, and clever camera angles to ratchet up audience panic to a fever pitch.
Such mood manipulation on a society-wide scale requires large numbers of useful idiots, gullible clowns, and power control freaks inside government, academia, and media. No surprise here, that is simply how things are managed in a settled regime -- between revolutions.