Ten million homes in the UK should have their roofs covered with solar panels in the next six years, if the country is to fulfil its renewable energy potential, energy experts said on Wednesday.
That number – of more than a third of households generating energy from the sun – would allow the UK to produce about 6% of its annual electricity needs from solar power, with as much as 40% coming from the panels on sunny days in summer, by 2020. These figures are comparable to those of Germany, which has made a major push on solar power in the last decade.
Installing more solar panels brings the costs of the technology down dramatically, because of economies of scale, as the example of Germany and other countries shows. By 2030, the cost of solar should be comparable to that of even the dirtiest forms of coal, and of gas, said Ajay Gambhir, of Imperial College London.
Nearly half a million homes in the UK have solar panels installed today, recent figures show.