Captec Utilise Wasted Roof Space To Light Up Business

Captec, designers and manufacturers of specialist computer platforms, has announced it is now powering its 50,000 square foot Fareham headquarters with solar energy.

Captec-Solar-Panels.png

The installation of 600 polycrystalline solar panels, one of the largest in Hampshire, was timed for a January 2016 turn on as part of a decision to reduce the business’s electricity consumption, carbon dioxide emissions and financial outlay on power.

Since the installation, Captec has already noticed significant reductions in energy consumption, using as little as one kilowatt throughout the working day.

The roof of the company’s building is slanted at an angle of six degrees, obscuring the panels from sight, giving the additional benefit of a minimised visual effect on the surrounding community.

Planning for the development began in late 2015, with a month of maintenance undertaken on the roof to accommodate the new panels.

The work was conducted alongside a government initiative, using the highest quality solar technologies to optimise power generated and secure a return on investment in the shortest possible timeframe.

Moving to the Whittle Avenue site in 2013, Captec CEO, Max Toti, outlined his vision to make the company as green as possible. Captec is already an ISO 4001 certified organisation, adopts a best practice recycling policy and encourages employees to contribute it its efforts through a cycle to work reward scheme. Switching to a solar powered workforce further evidences Captec’s longstanding commitment to minimising its impact on the environment.

Captec Facilities Manager, Andy Hurley, said: “We could not be happier with the impact the installation of the solar panels has already had on our company.

We are already experiencing substantial benefits from switching to solar energy, benefits we only expect to increase as the summer months draw closer.

Using solar energy is just a part of our continual mission to keep our electricity consumption at an absolute minimum.”

Moving forward, Captec will continue to set the precedence for Hampshire businesses looking to go green. Plans are already in motion to replace every fluorescent light bulb in the business with LEDs. This will further reduce Captec’s electricity intake by over half the current rate.

http://www.captec-group.com/

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Move Over Mods & Rockers Its Tree Hugger Time

Once upon a time Brighton was a favourite destination for mods swarming in on scotters and rockers revving up. That was so last century! All the tree huggers seem to be greeing up to gear up for some clean fun with the University of Brighton power-bike rental service for staff and students which took to the streets for the first time on Monday, 7 March.
//mediastream.brighton.ac.uk/player510.swf

The university’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Debra Humphris, gave the new ‘e-bikes’ a trial run and declared them “excellent and great fun.”
She said: “The issue around sustainable transport and sustainable living is absolutely imperative for not just this nation but for every nation on earth, and the University of Brighton is strongly committed to sustainability.
“If this project in some small way makes a difference to emissions, to healthy living, to transport sustainability, then these are the things we must do. But we must not just practice them, we must research them and to find ways to change our behaviour to a more sustainable lifestyle.”
Associate Professor Anne Mandy, from the university’s Centre for Health Research, was awarded £36,000 to trial a fleet of 10 Electrically Assisted Power Cycles (EAPCs), one of 11 such projects funded by the Department for Transport to “help tourists, residents and workers go further by bike”.
The projects were chosen by Carplus, the non-profit environmental transport non-governmental organisation, which is investigating whether electric bikes are the answer to congestion, transport and health problems. Southern Railway and Eastbourne Borough Council are collaborating with the university’s research which will explore the uptake of electric bikes.
The launch, at Eastbourne railway station, was attended by Eastbourne MP Caroline Ansell and Eastbourne Mayor, Councillor Janet Coles. Both trialled the bikes and gave them the thumbs up.
The Eastbourne EAPCs will be available between the university’s campus in Eastbourne and the town’s railway station. Staff members who have completed e-bike training will be given access to an e-bike booking system which will enable them to book one of the ten e-bikes based in Eastbourne station to use while on university business. Staff and students will also be able to sign up to a separate rental scheme enabling them to rent an e-bike for various periods of time.
Associate Professor Mandy, the project lead, said sustainability was one of the university’s core values: “The university’s Travel Plan shows that 43 per cent of staff and 21 per cent of students travel to university as single drivers in their cars. The strategy is to reduce single occupancy vehicle transport by 10 per cent for staff and seven per cent for students by 2016
“This project will demonstrate the value of EAPCs for linking rail and university locations, and will lead to more understanding of the role of storage solutions and innovative support services.”
Paul Best, Southern’s Project Manager which hosted the launch, said: “We are committed to promoting more sustainable ways of getting to and from the station and these bikes certainly fall into this category.”
The e-bikes will be stored at the station and will be able to move to and from campus, to be returned to the station by the end of the day. The scheme is also supported by Blacks Bikes bike shop at Eastbourne station car park. The shop will assist with charging and e-bike maintenance. Eastbourne campus estates and facilities department have also assisted with the initiative.
Earlier research into and trials of electronically-assisted bikes by the university in Brighton showed they encouraged more people to cycle. Dr Frauke Behrendt, Principal Lecturer in Media Studies and who helped initiate the project, said:  “This project will demonstrate the value of EAPCs for linking rail and university locations, and will lead to more understanding of the role of storage solutions and innovative support services.”
Transport Minister Andrew Jones said: “Electric bikes are a great way to encourage new people to get into cycling and I hope this interesting scheme encourages more people to take it up. Cycling helps cut congestion and is a healthy, affordable transport option.
“We want to double the number of journeys made by bicycle. That is why we are also investing over the next five years in cycle training and infrastructure.”

MP Caroline Ansel said the power bikes could revolutionise cycling in Eastbourne: “It’s an excellent pilot and I commend the University of Brighton for bringing it to Eastbourne – where we lead, others may follow. It’s good for the environment, good for finances, good for lifestyle – in every way, it’s a real winner.”
Anna Stefanaki, from the university’s Environment Team, said the team was hopeful the scheme could be the first of e-bike initiatives across university campuses in future.
For more information about renting an e-bike here: http://goo.gl/forms/xFxM3Doa7H and for more information on the university’s e-bike research, go to: https://www.brighton.ac.uk/healthresearch/research-projects/university-campus-e-bikes.aspx
To view a video of the launch, go to: https://mediastream.brighton.ac.uk/Play/3239

Trina Solar Remained World’s Top Solar PV Module Producer in 2015

Trina Solar held on to its status as the world’s biggest producer of solar photovoltaic (PV) modules in 2015, producing 4.55 Gigawatts (GW) of crystalline modules, while Canadian Solar claimed second spot with 3.9 GW in 2015, according to an analyst with research and consulting firm GlobalData.

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Trina Solar’s efforts to expand its presence in key markets across the globe, leveraging on its innovative high-quality solar products, strong sales network and brand recognition, have enabled the company to capture numerous opportunities.

Ankit Mathur, GlobalData’s Practice Head for Power, says: “Trina Solar has experienced impressive results over the past year. For example, it has announced a new efficiency record of 22.13% for its mono-crystalline silicon solar cell, which breaks the previous record of 21.40% and demonstrates an impressive efficiency improvement of 0.73 percentage points within only one year.

“In addition, the company has announced a new manufacturing base in Thailand to add 500 Megawatt (MW) module and 700 MW cell capacities, and this, along with its Malaysia facility, will help to expand Trina Solar’s production and boost competitiveness in global markets.”

Canadian Solar also had a positive year, following the acquisition of Recurrent Energy, a provider of solar power systems, from Sharp Corporation for a purchase consideration of approximately $265 million in cash in February 2015.

Mathur continues: “The acquisition enables Canadian Solar to more than double its total and late-stage solar project pipelines, and propelled the company from fourth in 2014 up to second place last year, overtaking Yingli and JinkoSolar.

“Canadian Solar has a substantial global project pipeline, a strong downstream project development business and offers low manufacturing costs. The company has also begun to offer a new upgraded warranty on its polycrystalline PV modules by guaranteeing a lower first year power output degradation.”

In terms of other top solar PV producers in 2015, JinkoSolar Holding Co., Ltd. claimed third place, with 3.79 GW produced, while JA Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. came in fourth with 3.38 GW, and Hanwha Q CELLS Co., Ltd. ranked fifth, with 3.2 GW produced.

GlobalData also states that Yingli, which produced 3.35 GW in 2014, has not benefited from solar power’s growing popularity in the same way. Production dropped to 2.35 GW in 2015, as liquidity issues and debt repayments caused the company to plummet from second to seventh in the global rankings.

Star Renewable Energy Reveals World’s Largest Industrial Air Source Heat Pump to Retrofit High-Rise Buildings

Glasgow-based firm Star Renewable Energy threw open its doors to unveil its revolutionary air source heat pump (ASHP) – the Neatpump – to the world, as part of the International 2016 Low Carbon Heat & Water Conference and Showcase.
Guests attending the event had a rare opportunity to see the revolutionary air source “Neatpump” in action under test conditions, at a facility where, coincidentally, the new series of Robot Wars is currently being filmed. While Star Renewable Energy’s innovation doesn’t involve flamethrowers or pneumatically powered axes, the system certainly proved to be of great interest to customers and suppliers within the low carbon heating sector, with a reverse cycle hot gas defrost and active control system designed to maximise uptime and efficiency.8b5a9449abebb57a_800x800ar

Mr Pearson said, “A clean air, decarbonised society in 2035 will need heatpumps capable of retrofit, not just other ways of burning stuff. We are thrilled to be able to show attendees exactly what it can do for them and their businesses.”

With temperatures of up to 65 degrees C and 700 KW, the air source heat pump provides 3 units of heat for each unit of energy consumed and can be used to retrofit large buildings as well as new buildings and industrial processes.

The air source development, which has been integrated with a district heating design, is the latest in a long line of innovations that have been brought to life by the joint thinking of a team of experts from Star Renewable Energy, Glasgow Housing Association (GHA), British Gas and consultants WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff.

The air source development is currently being tested under real weather conditions outside Star’s factory and has been confirmed to exceed modelling performance targets.

Pearson said, “Extensive modelling and real-life testing have demonstrated that the high temperature air source heatpump can deliver effective and affordable heating to existing social housing with the result of a 53% drop in carbon footprint – dropping even further as the grid decarbonises.”

“The impact will be a generation of cleaner, lower cost heating for households.”

As one of the largest social landlords in the UK, GHA focused on lower costs, lower carbon solutions for their customers, and drove the initial assessment process. British Gas brought their design, project management and commercial skills in to deliver an innovative “wet system” design, which, when put in conjunction with SRE’s pioneering design, has been proven to break temperature and efficiency barriers. Engineering consultants from WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff recognised that utilising low district heating temperatures would be the key to success, and, with their system modelling expertise, developed a fully integrated system design to maximise heat pump efficiency and deliver effective heating within the practical constraints of retrofitting to existing housing stock.

The GHA will also lead the deployment project once the heatpump has been fully tested and is ready to be despatched.

Robert Kilpatrick, an Assistant Director (Development & Operations) of University of Strathclyde Glasgow, who witnessed the testing of the large air source heatpump, said, “I think it goes without saying that heatpumps are starting to offer a different type of solution to tackle carbon reduction on a large scale for generating heat, so, it’s a fantastic new development here which compliments the water source heat pumps that Star have already had some achievement on – well done to them.”

The Neatpump air source heatpump is part of an affordable, low carbon heating solution developed to meet decarbonisation targets without the cost, complexity and constraints associated with many renewable energy systems. It doesn’t need fuel deliveries or constant attendance and has minimal environmental impact.

Star Renewable Energy has been at the forefront of innovation in the world of renewable heating since 2009, when parent company Star Refrigeration launched a range of high efficiency “natural working fluid” heatpumps – a move which was the first step in creating the award winning Neatpumps.
For more information about the Air Source and Water Source Heatpumps – Neatpumps – visit the Star Renewable Energy website:www.neatpump.com.

Astrid Prado
PR & Marketing Manager
Star Refrigeration
Thornliebank Industrial Estate
G46 8JW
Glasgow
T: 0044 (0) 141 638 7916
e: aprado@star-ref.co.uk

About Star Refrigeration
 Established in 1970, Star Refrigeration say they lead the way in natural refrigeration 
 and heating technology.
 Working closely with its customers, the company strive to offer a comprehensive range of cost effective, eco-friendly and socially responsible heating and cooling solutions to suit a variety of different business needs.

It’s Closing Time For Solar Soon And 2015 Saw The End of Green Deal—  But  is that light at the end of the tunnel or the bailiff with a torch?

Christmas2013

Dear Solarpreneur,

Green Deal
The Green Deal Finance Company (GDFC), which was the backbone of what was haled as our government’s flagship Green Deal ceased trading in July without notice and this was not even mentioned in the Tory manifesto. It hung many operators out to dry and was frankly a great idea totally botched in its execution. Why have loans that cost more than a supermarket can offer?

I believe the cannot, have not run a business Civil Servants took a great idea and ruined it.  UK government’s recent energy and climate policy fiasco looks even more short-sighted, counter-productive, and incoherent when we learn that fracking will be enhanced with £175m in subsidies for diesel generators that are basically mini fracking gas power stations.

As for Cameron, words fail me! Call me Dave frankly postures for publicity on his ‘climate credentials’, whilst all his actions speak louder than his words as UK Tories are strictly ANTI-renewables and pro-carbon!

Green Investment Bank Sell Off
The Green Elephant (Investment) Bank GIB – is about to become the GFB (Green Fracking Bank) is being privatised but  under questioning by MPs that a privatised bank would “technically” be free to invest in projects such as fracking.

Diesel Farms
Subsidies levied on household energy bills to aid renewable energy will in 2016 drive a boom in polluting “diesel farms” across the UK to meet periods of peak electricity demand and they frankly will also run on gas from fracking.

Now you have spotted what this is all about – whilst you and I think that fossil fuels are on the other side of history our government do not.

China and EU Anti-dumping News
Yesterday Solar Power Portal reported Europe’s solar sector has been handed a somewhat unwanted Christmas present in the form of a fresh set of duties on solar imports from Asia as EU has lost what some estimate as €500 million in lost customs revenue. PV TECH say the European Commission has handed down anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties of 53.4% and 11.5% to Malaysian and Taiwanese firms that enable Chinese solar products to dodge existing trade laws.

It is said that Chinese firms have been circumventing European trade anti-dumping and subsidy duties by ‘transhipping’ product via Malaysia and Taiwan.
It is expected that  “genuine” manufacturers from Taiwan and Malaysia will be exempted with only those thought to be aiding circumvention by Chinese firms to be subject to duties.
China say they are doing nothing wrong.

Light at end of tunnel
MCS have given the verdict on what is going on

MCS have reviewed the Government response to the Feed-in Tariff consultation and have produced a summary document.

 

Please find a link to this document, along with links to the actual response and the Government’s summary document below:

 

MCS summary document here

 

Government response here

 

High-level consumer friendly summary of the response here

Amber Rudd is ill informed so now making financially unintelligible decisions as well as an environmentally unfriendly one and my blog gives more detail on this.

Business NOW
If you need a team of 14 people I can put you in touch with such a team who are working today and tomorrow to get 250 kWp 400m2 roof finished. Do get in touch if you want a team ready to work by the middle of next week? Email me for details

As you might be aware I am helping in other ways and with that in mind I’m now at my second home on the Indian Ocean Island of Sri Lanka- It is past midnight so MERRY CHRISTMAS from me

The last fifteen years has left clues so I am resigning as a director of a Solar PV company in a few weeks. Not because Amber is slashing subsidies  but because I decided, after the general mishmash threatening the livelihoods of the renewable energy industry, that I could have a bigger impact reducing the growing risk of climate change by finding a second profit centre that would work hand in hand with what you do now as a solarpreneur in a different, less government subsidized focused way and role out will take place in the first quarter of 2016. This will back those involved in solar or other renewable energy products in a complimentary lifeboat way that will contribute to many existing or new clients. I promise to keep you posted!

 Merry Christmas

Ecobods
https://solarexpert.wordpress.com/
ABOUT>ME

UK Solar Industry’s Death By a Thousand Cuts In Order To Fund Diesel

Is Amber Rude Saying Get Out Of Solar- Get Into Diesel Farming?

Dear Solarpreneur,

As we look toward to the festive season it gives chance to reflect on all that went on before and what is happening in the future.

The UK Solar PV industry is run by a team of pioneers that we should be proud of and the results in the UK Solar PV sector have been stunning.

I take my hat off to the resilience of the installers, wholesalers, non-China based manufacturers (not a believer in allowing China to dump PV at below cost of manufacturing) , distributors, last but not least of course the investors large and small who pay for it by the field or rooftop.

Why you might ask am I so gushing and I will explain my admiration this minute. My mission is to contribute to an industry of good guys inspite of Conservative government cuts in financial aid by (was 87%) 65% despite its own review showing the move puts 18,700 jobs at risk.

When an industry such as  renewable energy starts from a virtual standstill it slowly begins collectively to pick itself up off the floor and raise itself to its knees.

It was disheartening when the Low Carbon Buildings Programme was started with an early finish in 2010 the industry was hung out to dry for years.

The LCBP replaced two earlier schemes, the ‘Major Photovoltaics Demonstration programme’, which assisted with photovoltaic installations, and the ‘Clear Skies’ programme, which aided other microgeneration installations.

The Government were criticised by the photovoltaic industry for ending the PV programme 6 years early as this left a funding gap between the old and new programmes. The disruption cost jobs and businesses in the last decade.

Then in 2011 to be subjected to a repeated kicking in the teeth with Greg Barker stating that we all had it so good and slashing FiT in such a botched way should have been a warning.

But this is our fate in needing subsidies to save our planet and leaves us at the hands of UK government.

Amber stated Millions more homes should have solar panels on their roofs, the new energy secretary has suggested, vowing to “unleash a new solar revolution” across Britain in May 2015

The money is going to fund fracking, diesel farms and nuclear power-stations.

Based on a promise by UK government many of us swapped from one sector to another as we grasped the nettle to  keep carbon out of the atmosphere and as each year, 5.5 billion tons of carbon is released by burning fossil fuels it is a worthy cause.

This is not a job for the feint hearted as Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and traps heat in the atmosphere. Without it and other greenhouse gases, Earth would be a frozen world, yet humans have burned so much fuel that there is about 30% more carbon dioxide in the air today than there was around 150 years ago.

The atmosphere has not held this much carbon for at least 400,000 years according to data from ice cores. More greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide in our atmosphere are causing our planet to become warmer.

It is a greater issue than the banking crisis with Polar icecaps melting and as we lurch toward two degrees higher temperature we brace ourselves for hurricanes or storms of a size we will have never witnessed in our lifetimes.

Every so often, we hear news about world leaders meeting in some civil service holiday location — Copenhagen, Lima, Durban, Kyoto and more recently in Paris.

No binding agreement to curb heat-trapping gases ever seems to take place and more often than not some country or another chucks its teddy out of the pram by not showing up.

Standard form follows with the other countries using those no shows or the ones who refuse to be bound as an excuse to get themselves off the hook.

In some cases the so called public servants really give no thought about polar bears or hurricanes and instead fall at the false altar of financial gain.

July 2015  Private Eye

In 2015 AMBER RUDE is making a great dogs dinner of Solar, this dogs dinner could be in my opinion rated by her ex husband A.A. Gil as a right trifle and if The Private Eye report is correct it could be a finger in pie issue.

Despite the MPs’ register of interests including a new category of ‘family members engaged in lobbying’ Rudd “makes no mention of her brother or his interests until 21 July 2015”

“The Eye asked the Department of Energy & Climate Change if Rudd had told its permanent secretary about Roland and Finsbury (another conflict of interest procedure) but it did not reply”

Cutting support for the renewable energy industry whilst backing nuclear is one argument but slashing subsidies, capping subsidies to £100m and giving £175m in subsidies to build heavily polluting “diesel farms” in order provide the UK with backup energy generating capacity is crazy.

The Guardian says -Almost a quarter of Britain’s back-up power under one programme for theNational Grid is being provided by tiny fossil fuel power stations – some of which have been built on farmland by entrepreneurs.

Richard_BG_Changed_V2.jpg

Whilst DECC goes back and forth I would suggest we keep going forward.

The last fifteen years has left clues so I am resigning as a director of a Solar PV company in a few weeks. Not because Amber is slashing subsidies  but because I decided, after the general mishmash threatening the livelihoods of the renewable energy industry, that I could have a bigger impact reducing the growing risk of climate change by finding a second profit centre that would work hand in hand with what you do now as a solarpreneur in a different, less government subsidized focused way and role out will take place in the first quarter of 2016. This will back those involved in solar or other renewable energy products in a complimentary lifeboat way that will contribute to many existing or new clients. I promise to keep you posted!

UK solar panel subsidy cuts branded ‘huge and misguided’ says Guardian headline

The market will get tough but we have a few months to chart a new course and I look forward to seeing you in 2016.

Best regards

Richardw_signed

ECOBODS

 

Energy Conservation Centre

Solar Phased Out In Dash For Gas

The dash for gas comes at the cost of solar as 25 new gas power stations will be set for launch.

Amber Rudd is intent to close down coal altogether, on BBC Radio 4 Amber Rudd would not give a number of new power stations and believes gas will help with our emission targets.

I ask how is that gas is counted as a renewable energy?

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Amber Rudd https://twitter.com/AmberRudd_MP single handed responsibility for killing renewable energy and all the jobs that go with this sector 

The problem is getting people to invest in gas when the UK government has made U Turns year in year out on every subsidy policy made for renewable energy.

We need renewables and cutting subsidy just as the market gets stable is going to cost many jobs and deplete the investment made by entrepreneurs along the way.

The great part about catch the rays from the sun or harnessing wind to make heat and power is that the equipment owner is in charge.

act-on-co2-logo

You can be certain that gasification will need huge investment and these investments will come with penalties being seen as the  bill payers suffer at the hands of the owners of these power stationoperators

Frankly I believe we are now going to miss our EU obligation for the uptake of renewables by some large margin and Rudd is choosing instead to break the law under the Climate Change Act.

The costs of renewable energy has tumbled, please excuse the pun but surely this is the time to turn the gas up on renewable energy and get every appropriate site to generate energy.

If we are fighting against fossil fuels then I really cannot understand building power stations that need another fossil fuel when we have so much sun and wind in our midst

Amber Rudd is ill informed so now making financially unintelligible decisions as well as an environmentally unfriendly one

Collaboration with community growth is the key for 21st century estate agents- going from me to we,

Source: Collaboration with community growth is the key for 21st century estate agents- going from me to we,

Green Deal Failed (Biggest home improvement flop since WWII)

The Government yesterday closed the Green Deal Finance company after it scrapped what was hailed as the flagship energy efficiency programme, the Green Deal.

Hailed the greatest home improvement scheme and then the Civil Servants over managed the process
Hailed the greatest home improvement scheme and then the Civil Servants over managed the process

As ever this will not be blamed on the heavy handed implementation l, pulling its funding and announcing an investigation into alleged scams that have surrounded the scheme.

Launched in 2013, the Green Deal was touted as a “revolution” in upgrading Britain’s old and draughty housing stock, designed to encourage millions of households to take out loans to install insulation and new boilers

The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced that the government will no longer fund the Green Deal scheme, which provided loans designed to help home owners improve the energy efficiency of their property.

Frankly the scheme was great and then the micro managers who never ever ran a business got involved.

The result was the creation of a system that was simply slow in fact very slow and at unsubsidised rates above that one could borrow money at in the supermarket.

Frankly it should have been fast and the interest should have been 0% or below bank rates.

As Energy Secretary Amber Rudd vowed to “deliver” fracking in Britain I expect its a case of grab that gas and a new scheme for gas boilers will be introduced as we blow things up in our last desperate attempt to get our fix of the fossil fuel we seem addicted to

 DECC Amber Rudd also announced that the Government will stop any future funding releases of the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund.
DECC Amber Rudd also announced that the Government will stop any future funding releases of the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund.

The above scheme was set to create jobs and I believed the pitch and even opened a company called GreenDeal.net

We think all renewable subsidies will be slashed as Cameron gets rid of Green Crap
We think all renewable subsidies will be slashed as Cameron gets rid of Green Crap

Frankly I was stupid to launch a company named after a government scheme as I was warned that the bureaucrats could ruin it and I ignored the advice.

Now you can see the Government’s press release https://www.gov.uk/government/news/green-deal-finance-company-funding-to-end

I’m off to another sector and say goodbye to my green chums

EU Solar Tax (And The Money Could Be Used To Fund Cinema’s Around EURO TRASH Zone)

As much as Dave and George next door at Number 11 want to make all the legislation for taxation, they cannot and the proof is comes as law this week.

EUROPEAN CINEMA SUPPORT FUND Support fund for co-production, distribution and digitisation of cinematographic works and cinemas  Click to read Cinema Image Courtesy of Pellicola Con Riflesso E Velluto” by Idea go

The United Kingdom cannot apply, with respect to all housing, a reduced rate of VAT to the supply and installation of energy-saving materials, since that rate is reserved solely to transactions relating to social housing

LAST NIGHT'S Cinema Image Courtesy of Pellicola Con Riflesso E Velluto” by Idea go EUROPEAN CINEMA SUPPORT FUND
Support fund for co-production, distribution and digitisation of cinematographic works and cinemas Click to read
Cinema Image Courtesy of Pellicola Con Riflesso E Velluto” by Idea go and AG Technik

The UK applies a reduced rate of VAT to ‘energy-saving materials’ which are installed in housing or which are supplied for installation in housing. The Commission considers that, by so acting, the UK has failed to comply with the VAT Directive. 1

The Commission therefore brought infringement proceedings against the UK before the Court of Justice. According to the Commission, a reduced rate of VAT can be applied only to supplies of goods and services specified in Annex III to the directive. That annex refers to the ‘provision, construction, renovation and alteration of housing, as part of a social policy’ and to the ‘renovation and repairing of private dwellings’.

The Commission considers that the supply and installation of ‘energy-saving materials’ in the housing sector do not fall into either of those two categories.

Even if such a supply or installation were to be regarded as falling under the second category (‘renovation and repairing of private dwellings’), the Commission states that, under the actual provisions of the VAT Directive, a reduced rate of VAT cannot be applied to that category where the materials account for a significant part of the value of the service supplied.

The Commission states that the energy-saving materials covered by the UK legislation extend to materials which account for a significant part of the value of the service supplied. In today’s judgment, the Court states that, with regard to the first of the two abovementioned categories, Annex III to the VAT Directive permits the application of a reduced rate of VAT solely to the provision, construction, renovation and alteration of housing which relate to social housing or to services supplied as part of a social policy. It follows that the VAT Directive precludes national measures which have the effect of applying the reduced rate of VAT to the provision, construction, renovation and alteration of any housing, irrespective of the social context in which such operations take place. Further, the Court states that, while it is true, as asserted by the UK, that a policy of housing improvement may produce social effects, the extension of the scope of the reduced rate of VAT to all residential property cannot be described as essentially social.

By providing for the application of a reduced rate of VAT to supplies of energy-saving materials and installation of such materials, irrespective of the housing concerned and with no differentiation among people living in that housing, the UK measures cannot be regarded as having been adopted for reasons of exclusively social interest or even for reasons of principally social interest.

Finally, the Court endorses the Commission’s argument with regard to the category of ‘renovation and repairing of private dwellings’. The full text of the judgment is published on the CURIA website on the day of delivery

 Case Document Date Name of the parties Subject-matter Curia EUR-Lex
C-161/14 Judgment
ECLI:EU:C:2015:355
04/06/2015 Commission v United Kingdom
EUR-Lex text
C-161/14 Application (OJ) 20/06/2014 Commission v United Kingdom

It is no point in threatening to vote UKIP as Farage had a manifesto stopping subsidies for onshore and offshore wind as well as solar. Goodness knows what could have  should they have got into power in the May polls.

What has cinemas got to do with solar?

Eurimages promotes the European audiovisual industry by providing financial support to feature films, animations and documentaries produced in Europe. In doing so, it encourages co-operation between professionals established in different European countries.

To you and I it means the money from solar panels, double glazing, heat pumps and other energy efficent measure could end up funding EURO TRASH