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  • Tom Clarkson

What Is the Smart Export Guarantee?

Updated: May 1


The Smart Export Guarantee Explained


As part of the UK’s goal to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in 2020 the government introduced the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) scheme. SEG offers export tariffs for small-scale low-carbon energy generating technologies (such as solar panels, wind power, hydropower, and more) to incentivise homeowners to utilise renewable energy.

The SEG replaces what was previously known as the Feed-in Tariff (FIT) which ended in 2019.


Under the SEG, energy companies offer tariffs to homeowners that generate renewable energy to export that energy to the National Grid. Certain criteria have to be met in order for your to be eligible to receive these tariffs, which we’ll explore later in this article.


How do I qualify for the SEG?


The SEG offers export tariffs for the following small-scale, low-carbon energy generation technologies:


· Solar panels (photovoltaic systems)

· Hydropower

· Wind power

· Anaerobic digestion

· Micro combined heat and power (CHP)


The total capacity for the first four categories cannot exceed 5MW to qualify for the SEG. For Micro CHP, on the other hand, the max is 50kW.


All systems require you to have an export meter. Smart meters are a convenient option to have installed as they take measurements every half hour which are automatically sent to your chosen SEG licensee, meaning your system can earn you money without you lifting a finger.


Solar Photovoltaic Systems


The popularity of solar energy for households across the UK is rapidly increasing as having a system installed is becoming more affordable and more aesthetically pleasing panels are coming to the market.


To qualify for the SEG, your solar system needs to create less than 5MW of electricity, which is well within the norm for a domestic solar system. Your solar installation also needs to be MCS certified (here at Optimum Electrics we’re fully MCS certified for both solar panel and battery installations, you can find out more about what this means here).


How Much Can You Make Selling Energy Back to the Grid?


How much you can earn through an export tariff varies depending on the size of your solar PV system, how much of your own energy your home uses and who your SEC license is with. The SEG scheme allows companies to set their own rates, and these can fluctuate.


Want to find out how much your new solar PV system could earn you through the SEG? Speak to one of our solar experts today who can advice on the best system for your home as well as guiding you through how this would impact your earning potential with the SEG.


How Do You Apply for the SEG?


The first step to applying for the SEG is to find a local SEG licensee. They can be different to your energy supplier, however most offer different rates based on whether they are your supplier as well or not so it’s well worth comparing a few options.


Applying for the SEG is quite straight forward but does require specific paperwork so it’s good to know what you will need to provide. This can vary slightly between SEG licensee’s but often includes:


· The SEG licensee’s application form

· A valid MCS certificate

· Proof of address

· Proof of ownership

· A photo of your smart meter or export meter

· A smart meter or half-hourly export meter reading.

· Schematic diagram

· DNO approval/acceptance letter


Following your application submission, most SEG licensees are currently working to a processing time of around 4 weeks. This is mostly down to the stage where the DNO creates your export MPAN which can take 1-4 weeks.


It’s rare but they may also want to inspect your system before accepting your application.


For more guidance on earning money through the SEG scheme, speak to one of our solar experts today.


Looking to install a solar PV system on your home or business premises? Contact our team today for expert advise and a free, no obligation quote and solar design.


01733 601698

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