Your farm business can secure up to 25% annual returns from a solar PV investment

Invest in solar PV to generate renewable electricity for your farm business and enjoy up to 25% per annum financial returns for decades to come, with lower carbon emissions an added bonus.

With attractive install grants, 100% accelerated capital allowances and VAT refunds available on your solar PV investment and a new feed-in tariff support structure for micro-generation planned for 2021, now is the time to invest in a solar PV system for your business.

Solar PV generates electricity from daylight with peak generation during February to October which is very much in line with the milk production year.

Additionally, with a feed-in tariff due by the middle of 2021, farm businesses and homes will get paid for any surplus generation exported to the grid.

30kWp solar PV install on dairy farm in Tipperary

The amount of electricity generated from solar PV is very predictable and guaranteed with premium technology installs. With no moving parts, maintenance is low and monitoring of electricity usage can be provided to your smart device ensuring you know that your investment is delivering every day.

Not like any other investment

Solar PV is not like any other investment. A solar PV system install, depending on the technology chosen, is fully warranted to generate for decades.

For example, Local Power Ltd offers a German-manufactured panel, Solarwatt, which guarantees over 87% of its initial performance after 30 years. Solar PV is also modular in design and in Local Power Ltd, the company generally advises on a staged approach to solar PV on farms to ensure that returns are optimised.

A 7kWp install on a mixed drystock farm in Cork

Under EU legislation, the government is obligated to introduce a feed-in tariff in mid-2021 for micro generation. A public consultation paper on how this will operate is due out in the next couple of months with decisions made on the new system to be implemented next year.

There are various options open to the new government: it could scrap the current grants and give a larger feed-in tariff for energy exported to the grid; it could keep grants and pay a modest feed-in tariff on the excess generation exported to the grid; or it could pay a small feed-in tariff on all the solar energy generated to encourage self-consumption.

It also has the option of providing a net metering system where the surplus energy generated effectively reverses the electrical meter, though this option is thought to be very unlikely.

A 25kWp solar PV install on dairy farm in Wexford

Local Power Ltd has installed over 1,500kWp of roof top solar PV on a wide diversity of farms in the past year from as little as 4kWp on dry stock farms and up to 150kWp on pig/poultry farms.

The company’s aim is to ensure that farmers are offered the best technology and secure the quickest paybacks possible.

Local Power Ltd also prides itself on offering customers full transparency by highlighting the pros and cons of the various technology options available and a turnkey solution by ensuring that the application process is seamless and hassle free.

A 150kWp solar PV install on pig farm in the south-east

Other changes to assist the deployment of roof top solar PV are also on the way. Significant exclusions to planning requirements, awaiting clearance by the new government, will mean that for most roof top PV installations in Ireland going forward, planning will not be required and it is expected that this is to be in place by December 2020.

ESB networks which controls grid access is actively progressing a number of significant changes to facilitate grid access. This will be very important going forward, especially for the larger farm installs.

A 50kWp install on poultry farm in Monaghan

Financing your solar PV installation

To finance your solar PV installation, four options are available.

One is to use your own cash reserves which gives double digit returns of up to 25% (beats negative returns being proposed by banks for keeping your cash); use your own bank to finance; or get Local Power Ltd funding partners to fund the project from the energy savings made for your installation over a three to seven-year period.

Alternatively, Local Power Ltd may be able to fund the project and charge your business a low-fixed kWh price for the renewable energy generated over a 15-year period.

A 100kWp install on a food company in Dublin

Choosing the right technology on day one

Farmers more than anyone know the importance that the quality of manufacture can have on the longevity and performance of a machine or tractor purchase.

The choices of technology to use when purchasing a PV solar system are even more critical to ensuring that you get decades of trouble-free electricity generation from your renewable investment. Local Power Ltd prides itself on offering a number of technology options and full transparency on warranties and quality is guaranteed.

Farmers are encouraged to check out the various technologies available and insist on datasheets to prove that what the company salespeople are saying is accurate.

Check out the grant options and tax benefits for your business and get written financial assessment on payback from your supplier. Finally, make sure that your investment delivers on your expectations by choosing the right technology on day one.

Local Power Ltd looks forward to hearing from you and assures all its customers of the best advice and an attentive and professional service should you chose it as your renewable energy install partner. Please contact: [email protected]; or call: 01-8250263 today.