Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Wrexham leads Europe's solar stupidity.
Green Business has the story of how the town of Wrexham has installed 30,000 solar panels in a location which has an average of only 3 hours of sunshine for 4 months of the year. Tenants in 3000 homes will achieve "savings" of £200 to £300 on their electricity bills which will of course be added to the bills of pensioners and consumers in other parts of the UK . The council also will be the beneficiary of solar largesse to the tune of one million pounds a year from feed-in tariffs, also ripped off the same non-solar consumers. The dopey solar scheme is so bad it has even been labelled a rip-off by George Monbiot , one of the leading AGW supporters in the UK who realises that having consumers pay ten times production costs for "free" solar electricity doesn't make any sense. The scheme has been supported by the Lib-Dims in the governmetn although glimmers of Conservative common sense can be seen in the decision to reduce the subsidies.
Wrexham - average sunshine: three hours a day for four months of the year - has joined Sacramento in California, desert city Abu Dhabi and Freiburg in Germany as a new solar power centre.
The north Walian town, which has had one of Europe's largest solar panel factories since 2005, employing around 1,000 people, moves into the renewable energy premier league this month after installing 30,000 panels made in the town on 3,000 of its council homes. This year it will fit six schools and several public buildings with a further 90kW of solar power.
In what council chiefs say was a "sensible" investment, Wrexham last year borrowed nearly £28m for the 5MW scheme to equip one in three of its properties with panels made by Japanese company Sharp, which has a solar module factory on the edge of the town. Tenants, who pay on average around £70 a week to rent their homes, can expect £200-300 a year off their bills from the electricity they generate and the council will make over £1m a year profit from feed-in tariffs, the government's solar incentive scheme. The money will increase Wrexham's housing budget by nearly 10 per cent, and will be invested back in public housing