Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland
Solar energy can provide both electricity and heat. It's unlikely to supply all the energy a business needs but can provide a significant percentage.
Photovoltaic (PV) panels convert sunlight into electricity. They are available in a variety of formats including cladding, roof tiles and custom glazing. The panels are generally positioned on an unshaded, pitched roof. This allows them to receive as much sunlight as possible.
Solar hot water systems absorb energy from the sun and transfer it, using heat exchangers, to heat water. Solar water heating can heat water to temperatures of up to 65°C. There are a variety of solar water heating collectors available, which are commonly mounted on roofs in the same way as PV panels.
Solar energy is an intermittent technology as it is dependent on sunlight. Panels can generate some energy when conditions are cloudy but not at night.
Solar energy can be expensive to implement, usually with payback periods of more than 8 years. The cost of solar PV has dropped recently so payback periods are shorter than before. Fitting solar systems on existing buildings can be costly. It is better to install solar energy at the build stage.
The Northern Ireland Environment Agency has published a short guide to the duty of care responsibilities including advice and information for waste producers, carriers and those accepting, storing and treating waste.
Any person intending to alter the use or management of areas of uncultivated or semi-natural land must obtain prior approval from the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA).
Read more on the DAERA website
The NetRegs team at SEPA, in partnership with The Northern Ireland Environment Agency, Natural Resources Wales and a number of industry bodies have produced 9 new GPPs to replace out of date PPGs. More are coming! Check the available topics
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