If you are interested in generating your own renewable energy in England Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales, the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) could be for you.
In this article, we explain what it is, who can be an SEG generator, and what the benefits are.
What is the Smart Export Guarantee?
The SEG is a UK government policy and Ofgem approved scheme that requires large energy suppliers to pay eligible customers for the renewable electricity they export to the grid.
The SEG was established on January 1, 2020, and is a government-backed project. The SEG Licensees are required by the SEG to pay small generators (SEG Generators) for low-carbon electricity that they export back to the National Grid if certain criteria are met.
Who Can Be an SEG Generator?
The SEG is open to all who qualify for the program based on their technology type, up to a capacity of 5MW or 50kW for micro-CHP (as long as they satisfy the other criteria).
- Anaerobic digestion (AD)
- HydroMicro combined heat and power (micro-CHP)
- Solar photovoltaic (solar PV)
These installations must be located in Great Britain.
Which Renewable Energy Installations are Eligible?
The smart export guarantee applies to the following renewable energy technologies:
- Solar PV systems, onshore wind, anaerobic digestion, hydro – up to 5MW.
- Micro-CHP – with an electrical capacity of up to 50kW.
A typical domestic system, for example, would not exceed these specs. The Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) or equivalent must be used by homeowners. Energy providers may request an MCS certificate to show that your installation meets this requirement.
Even if you’re not subscribing to a smart tariff, you’ll need a registered smart meter that records your exported power.
How Does the SEG Work?
The SEG Licensees set the rate at which they will pay SEG Generators, as well as other terms. If you’re considering applying for an SEG tariff, look around to see which one is appropriate for your specific needs.
The cost of each kWh supplied under an SEG contract must always be greater than zero. Export meter readings are used to calculate SEG payments.
The electricity that is exported back to the National Grid by SEG Generators does not go through the standard half-hourly settlement process.
Instead, SEG Licensees pay SEG Generators for their electricity at a set rate per kWh, and suppliers are then invoiced by the Licensee for these payments.
This system is designed to make it easier for small generators to get paid for their electricity, as they are not required to have complex meter arrangements in place.
How Much Will I Receive for Exporting Electricity?
The SEG has no set or minimum tariffs; the only condition is that the tariff must be greater than zero at all times.
This means that energy suppliers are in charge of determining what rates to offer their clients. They may select to provide a variety of tariffs or just one.
SEG rates are often fixed or fluctuate. A fixed SEG rate will be paid for each kWh of electricity exported over the term of the contract.
A variable SEG rate will change in price based on market demand, with the requirement that prices never fall below zero.
Every year, Ofgem publishes a list of SEG licensees. For details on the available SEG rates at your energy provider, contact them directly.
Is the Smart export guarantee worth it?
The Smart Export Guarantee is a step in the right direction, but it doesn’t go nearly far enough to compensate solar panel owners or attract potential purchasers.
The greatest Smart Export Guarantee tariff is Octopus’s 7.5p per kWh offer, which is better than the current 28.3p per kWh basic rate that consumers pay for electricity.
What is the difference between FIT and SEG?
The feed-in tariff (FIT) scheme, which was available to new applicants until March 31, 2019, has been replaced by the smart export guarantee (SEG) in January 2020.
The primary distinction is that energy suppliers with over 150,000 customers must now provide an SEG rate under the new SEG plan.
Visit the page for Generators if you want to know more about applying for the SEG. There, you may discover additional information on how to apply and specific eligibility requirements.