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An Overview of Day 2 At The UK Solar Summit 2024

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The UK Solar Summit is the leading annual gathering for stakeholders in the solar energy sector, including industry experts, policymakers, developers, investors, and technology innovators. This prestigious event serves as a dynamic platform for discussing the latest trends, challenges, and advancements in solar energy, all aimed at accelerating the UK’s transition to a renewable energy future.

Day 1 of the summit set a strong foundation for the discussions, with a focus on global trends, policy updates, and technological innovations. As we move into Day 2, the momentum continues with a focus on large-scale solar projects, grid integration, and innovative solutions to optimise land use and storage. Deep diving into the future of solar energy, bringing together industry leaders, policymakers, and innovators to discuss strategies for expanding solar capacity and addressing the challenges facing the sector. Here are the key takeaways from the second day of the summit.

Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs) and Solar Development

The day kicked off with a panel discussion focusing on the outlook for Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs) across England and Wales. This session was crucial for understanding how to effectively plan supply chains, secure grid connections, and engage local communities to support large-scale solar projects. Key points included the need for reforms in the NSIP process and the significant impact of the new National Policy Statement on the solar industry.
UK Solar Summit Day 2

Local Authorities and Solar Integration

One of the most insightful sessions was about how local authorities across the UK are leveraging solar energy to meet net-zero targets. This discussion covered ground-mount and rooftop solar potentials, as well as battery storage options for existing and upcoming projects. It was emphasised that local councils play a vital role in the UK’s transition to renewable energy, and their future aspirations were highlighted as essential to achieving national targets.

The State of the Grid

A detailed presentation on the state of the grid was delivered, which focused on the latest market data, trends in connection costs, and the impact of new technical limits. This session provided a comprehensive overview of the evolving landscape of UK grid connections, emphasising the importance of adapting to these changes to facilitate the growth of solar energy.

Optimal Use of Limited Land Space

A critical issue discussed was the optimal use of limited land space for solar projects. The panel explored best practices for using non-farmland spaces, integrating storage in rooftop solar projects, and collaborating with farmers to utilise agricultural land effectively. The discussion highlighted how misconceptions about land use can hinder progress and stressed the importance of industry, government, and trade bodies working together to overcome these challenges and meet targets.

Future Energy Mix and Policy Advocacy

Another significant discussion centred around the future energy mix of the UK and the policy advocacy required to support large-scale solar projects. The panel addressed the need for clear government initiatives and policy pushes to prioritise alternative rooftop options for PV installations, such as carports and other commercial infrastructures. This session highlighted the gaps in current policies and the steps needed to address these issues effectively.

Co-Location of Storage and Solar

The day concluded with a panel discussing opportunities and case studies of co-location of storage and solar projects. This session explored the best revenue streams, technological advancements, and regulatory frameworks needed to optimise the co-location of these resources. The insights shared were invaluable for understanding how to maximise the efficiency and profitability of solar projects integrated with storage solutions.
Day 2 of the UK Solar Summit 2024 was packed with valuable insights, strategic discussions, and networking opportunities. The sessions underscored the importance of collaboration between various stakeholders, the need for policy reforms, and the innovative solutions required to overcome the challenges facing the solar industry. As the UK moves towards its ambitious renewable energy targets, the discussions and outcomes from this summit will play a crucial role in shaping the future of solar energy in the country.
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