A SHEFFIELD firm has started work on the UK’s largest project to install solar panels on houses – fitting the devices to 650 homes around South Yorkshire over the coming year.
Navitas Solar Installations was awarded the contract by South Yorkshire Housing Association and has started work at properties on Sevenairs Road, Beighton.
The Killamarsh firm is working with Solar Century, the UK’s biggest supplier and installer of photovoltaic equipment.
Matt Woods, director of Navitas, said: “We are proud to be installing for SYHA.
“This work gives everybody the benefits of solar, from low income families to sheltered housing schemes.
“It now helps to safeguard the tenants against expensive electricity bills.”
People who have solar panels fitted to their homes can also claim a rebate from the Government, under the Feed In Tariff scheme, which promotes green energy.
With 120 homes already generating electricity from solar, South Yorkshire Housing Association is on course to own more solar-powered properties than any other organisation in the country.
The system will provide around 30 per cent of tenants’ electricity consumption, making around 1,410 units of electricity a year from daylight.
At current electricity prices, the annual saving per home is expected to be £130, but with electricity bills rising, people in South Yorkshires’ solar homes are expected each to save £2,235 over 10 years and £8,967 over 25 years.
The overall scheme will prevent over 350 tonnes of C02 emissions a year.
Craig Jackson, of SYHA’s LiveGreen team, said: “Solar power is a fantastic way to upgrade our building stock, as we’re effectively being paid to do it with the Feed-in tariff and it’s helping to significantly reduce energy costs for our tenants.
“I urge housing associations to look at the long-term investment prospects of this clean technology, the reasons go beyond the environmental and social – they’re now economic.”
The technology’s very versatile too, we’re fitting solar electric roof tiles and sun stations to many of our properties.”