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Microgeneration Market Report - UK 2013-2017 Analysis 

  • December 2013
  • -
  • AMA Research
  • -
  • 87 pages


Table of Contents

AMA Research are pleased to announce the publication of the 1st Edition of the report “Microgeneration Market Report - UK 2013-2017 Analysis, focusing on those technologies certified by the Microgeneration Certification Scheme. Drawing together a wide range of sources, this report provides an integrated overview of recent growth and market prospects for power generation technologies up to 50 kWe and heat generating products up to 45 kWth.

Key issues covered in the report are:

Microgeneration technologies reviewed – solar photovoltaics, micro wind power, micro hydropower, solar thermal and biomass boilers & stoves. ground & air source heat pumps micro-CHP.
General overview of the renewable energy sector identifying key drivers for microgeneration– strategic and fiscal (e.g. Microgeneration Strategy, Renewable Energy Strategy, Energy Bill 2012 /Electricity Market Reform, Feed In Tariff (FIT), Renewable Heat Initiative (RHI), Renewables Obligation, Green Deal).
Recent market developments – impact of FIT, RHI etc on annual number of installations & capacity for installed for each micro technology.

The key area of interest is that the government intends for microgeneration to be a key element in the energy mix as the UK moves towards decentralized energy provision. Household take-up of microgeneration has been patchy and variable between technologies, reflecting many factors such as awareness, installation cost, subsidies, paybacks etc, with the launch of The Green Deal the most recent initiative to drive the market.

Of particular interest:

Market sizes and by installed capacities, numbers of installations and /or by generating output - for micro CHP, heat pumps, solar PV, solar thermal, micro & small wind turbines, micro hydropower and biomass boilers.
Assessment of impact of Feed -In Tariffs, Renewable Heat Incentive, Green Deal etc.
Evaluation of growth potential for these technologies.
Green Deal Plans Agreed – take-up in 2013 and beyond. Trends in domestic and non-domestic sectors.

Key areas covered in the report include:

Overview of trends in UK energy supply 1995 - 2012 by technology type, impact of Large Combustion Plant Directive on infrastructure, potential energy generation mix. Overview of Renewable Energy and Microgeneration. Review of greenhouse gas emissions – trends by type and end-user source 1995 -2012
Review of government strategies and legislation – Renewable Energy Strategy, the Energy Bill & Electricity Market Reform, the Microgeneration Strategy.
Identification of key market drivers – Feed in Tariff, Renewable Heat Initiative, Renewables Obligation, Renewable Heat Premium Payment, Green Deal, Energy Performance Certification, Microgeneration Certification Scheme. Green Deal Plans agreed – Jan-Sep 2013
Overview of renewables in the UK energy mix – trends in overall electricity generation mix by fuel type 2006 to 2012. Trends within renewable energy mix by capacity and generation 2006 -2012. Market prospects to 2020.


Overview of Microgeneration market - market size by technology, value and number of installations 2009-2013. Strengths and weaknesses of alternative technologies, drivers, size/trends in domestic / non-domestic applications etc
Solar photovoltaic panels – review of total PV market by capacity and output 2006-2012 and total installed capacity by incentive programme. Review of impact of Low Carbon Buildings Programme and Feed -In -Tariff on demand –market sizes by capacity and installation numbers. Market prospects with forecasts to 2020. Overview of supply.
Solar thermal – review of European market 2008–2012. View of UK market for micro solar thermal systems. Impact of Low Carbon Building Programme and Renewable Heat Incentive. Demand by end use sector by area installed. Market prospects to 2020. Overview of supply.
Micro hydropower - review of market by capacity and output under Low Carbon Buildings Programme and Feed-In–Tariff. Market sizes by capacity and installation numbers. Market size by capacity ranges. Overview of supply by types of operators and equipment suppliers.
Ground and air source heat pumps - review of UK market by trends in installation numbers. Impact of Low Carbon Building Programme and Renewable Heat Incentive. Mix by end use sector by area installed. Overview of supply.
Biomass boilers – market size, trends and drivers e.g. Low Carbon Building Programme, Renewable Heat Incentive etc. Market prospects. Overview of supply.
Micro Combined Heat & Power systems – review of impact of pilot Feed-In–Tariff. Market size by capacity and installation numbers. Market prospects. Overview of supply by types of operators and equipment suppliers..
Micro and small wind turbines – trends in micro wind turbines capacity & output 2005-2012, trends in small wind turbines capacity & output 2005-2012. Market prospects and key drivers e.g. General Permitted Development Orders .Overview of supply.

The Government has ambitious short term targets for microgeneration as a key component in the UK’s energy mix over the next decade and beyond. This is partly because most such technologies have relatively low levels of uptake, compared to mainland Europe, but offer significant potential, partly due to limits on capacity of larger renewable plants or, as with hydro-electric power, options for further growth are limited.

A key driver will be the shutting down of those remaining coal, gas and oil fired power stations by April 2015 that opted out of the Large Combustion Plant Directive. This will leave a significant shortfall in the UK’s power generating capacity.

In accordance with the Microgeneration Certification Scheme there are seven existing technologies eligible for support and also for payment under the FIT and RHI. These are power generating systems up to 50 kW - solar photovoltaics, micro windpower, micro hydropower and solar thermal up to 45 kWh; micro combined heat & power, biomass boilers, heat pumps (ground source and air source) and solar thermal.

After strong growth in the solar PV sector, up to 2011, the number of installations declined in 2012 and, based on comparative data for the first eight months of 2013 against 2012, installations are estimated to have fallen significantly in 2013. There were sharp falls in February, March and July 2013, possibly due to the decline in FIT payments from 40.83 p/kWh up to 3 March 2012 to 21.65 p/kWh for most of March 2012.

Solar PV is clearly the dominant technology with a massive uplift in demand in 2011/12, in contrast to the relatively low and slow market acceptance of micro CHP and Hydro technologies. With the exception of micro combined heat & power, these are mature technologies, widely used in many countries. However, the UK currently has one of the lowest penetration rates for all microgeneration technologies, lagging far behind not only Germany, Austria and Scandinavia, but also most southern European nations. Due to factors such as capital costs and climate change scepticism, the level of uptake among homeowners and small businesses has been restrained despite fiscal incentives such as the Low Carbon Buildings Programme.

However, with the introduction of financial incentive schemes - the Feed-In-Tariff and the non-domestic Renewable Heat Incentive - and the development of the Microgeneration Certification Scheme, there has been a sharp surge in the uptake of solar PV and to a lesser extent solar thermal. Also key to this has been the decline in average prices for PV panels, driven largely by the increasing market penetration of low-cost Chinese imports.

Based on installation data from the Microgeneration Certification scheme and average installation costs for each of the eligible technologies it is estimated the market accelerated from around £22m in 2009 to over £2 billion in 2012, mainly because of the impact of the FIT on the uptake of domestic retrofitted solar PV.

While the growth in the market may provide work opportunities for installers, most equipment in the UK is supplied from overseas, particularly wind turbines, solar PV and solar thermal arrays, biomass boilers and heat pumps. In the hydropower sector, there is a greater proportion of indigenous systems suppliers.

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