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Last Updated: Sunday, 8 October 2006, 23:33 GMT 00:33 UK
Ofgem pushes for microgeneration
Solar panel
Ofgem thinks current rules on microgeneration are too complex
Microgeneration of energy is set to grow and grow but existing rules are too complicated, warns an Ofgem report.

The regulator wants energy firms to give customers information on how to install wind turbines and solar panels.

In addition Ofgem wants energy firms to pay all customers who send surplus energy back to the grid.

From next year, payment will be mandatory but today some customers get no money for supplying excess energy.

High street options

Ofgem said it would help reduce red tape to further boost microgeneration.

In British homes, some 80,000 microgeneration units have been installed.

"The microgeneration units are still fairly expensive, but there is a presumption that if they are being sold more widely, then more people are going to buy them," says the regulator.

The increasing popularity of generating energy domestically has been seen as high street retailers have started offering off-the-peg packages.

Retailer Currys started selling solar panels in August and in September DIY firm B&Q started offering domestic wind turbines for 1,498.

With gas prices soaring, alternative ways of generating energy has gained in appeal in recent months.

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