Record Breaking Year for Renewables

2023 WAS a record breaking year for small-scale renewables, certification body MCS says.

The year saw over 220,500 installations registered by MCS bringing the total to over 1.7 million installations certified.

More than 1,800 new contractors were certified during 2023, marking a 70% growth in the MCS contractor base on the previous year. This huge expansion reflects the demand for more skilled, competent installers, MCS says.

Ian Rippin CEO MCS 2024

“It goes without saying that 2023 was a year of substantial growth, innovation, and transformation across the renewables landscape. MCS has had an incredibly busy year, and our data confirms the fantastic progress we’ve made in giving people confidence in home-grown energy.,” MCS CEO, Ian Rippin said.

Solar PV

The MCS solar PV contractor base also experienced substantial growth with the total reaching 3,300 in 2023.

Meanwhile, solar PV continues to be the most popular renewable technology amongst UK homeowners and 189,236 certified solar PV installations were completed in 2023, up from 138,000 in 2022.

The 2023 figure comes close to the all-time MCS record of 203,129 registered installations in 2011, at the height of the Feed-in Tariff era.

Solar Energy UK Chief Executive Chris Hewett

“Setting a post-subsidy record of almost 190,000 smaller-scale solar PV installations, and approaching the all-time record of 203,000, is truly a moment to celebrate. The solar industry is on a roll, particularly as we start to conclude work on the government-industry Solar Taskforce, whose roadmap for delivering 70GW of capacity is due to be published in a couple of months,” said Solar Energy UK Chief Executive Chris Hewett.

Heat Pumps

While the past year saw 35,000 new heat pump installations registered, MCS points to the need for “an army” of installers to enable government ambitions of 600,000 heat pump installations a year by 2028.

In October 2023, increases to the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) vouchers for heat pumps to £7,500, led to average weekly applications for BUS vouchers soaring from 331 to 1,172.

Battery Storage

MCS says to capitalise on the benefit of generating solar energy at home, battery storage is vital and MCS introduced an installation standard in 2023. Batteries are the third most popular technology to be installed amongst MCS contractors with over 850 certified to do so. Over 4,400 certified batteries were installed last year.

Renewables In Store for 2024

In 2024 MCS’s new Scheme comes into effect on 1 April, resetting the consumer protections it provides for consumers installing small-scale renewables.

MCS expects small-scale renewable installations to become increasingly important to reach the UK’s net zero targets. In 2024, it anticipates more and more UK homeowners will transition to renewable energy to heat and power their homes.

>>Read more about MCS in the news

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