The solar power industry appears to have installed its 500,000th set of panels in the UK in recent days, in a move that marks a major milestone for the burgeoning sector.
According to figures by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, 499,687 solar schemes had been installed by January 5 under the feed-in tariff scheme that supports solar arrays with a capacity smaller than 50kW.
With the solar market installing around 1,900 schemes on average per week over the past year and work now picking up after the Christmas holidays it is highly likely more than 313 would have been installed last week, taking the industry past the half a million mark.
However, it remains to be seen how close the industry is towards its goal of installing one million solar arrays specifically on homes by 2015. On one hand, the figures show that only 478,875 of the installations were definitely fitted on domestic rooftops, with larger installations likely to have featured on offices and commercial properties. But Leonie Greene of the Solar Trade Association argued that several thousand panels were installed on rooftops before the feed-in tariff began, meaning that the industry is likely to have delivered around half a million domestic installations.
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