The Feed-in Tariff (FiT) Scheme, an incentive scheme that has driven the growth of small and mid-sized renewable generation projects across the UK since 2011, is set to close next year under new plans set out by the government. A consultation launched today by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) sets out plans to end the FiT, which pays domestic and commercial green energy generators and exporters for electricity they produce for the grid. The success of the scheme has exceeded all expectation, driven in early years by generous subsidies and later by rapidly falling technology costs leading to unprecedented deployment. In total, the FiT has delivered around 6GW of clean energy capacity over 800,000 installations. But critics have also argued the scheme has eaten into budgets for clean energy subsidies funded via energy bills, leading to higher ‘green levies’ while delivering emissions reductions at a higher cost than larger scale projects. The government argues that as renewables costs have fallen the sector no longer needs such a generous subsidy regime. It decided in 2015 to close the FiT to new generation tariffs from March 2019, leaving only the export tariff running. It is now proposing to fold that closure into the winding down of the entire scheme by March 2019.
Business Green 19th July 2018 read more »
The green economy has widely condemned the government’s post-subsidy renewables vision, deriding it for a lack of clarity and the potential for it to have “worrying” and “truly bizarre” consequences. Earlier today the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published two key documents that have been more than a year in the making. Its consultation on the future of the feed-in tariff outlines how the department intents to manage the scheme’s closure next March, while a vision for the future of small-scale renewable generation in the UK was also released. The renewables lobby has responded almost unanimously, and it is not had received the proposals well. Chris Hewett, chief executive at the Solar Trade Association, said the government has been “frighteningly vague” on what follows the feed-in tariff once it closes on 31 March 2019. “There is real dismay that there is now a serious & needless policy gap between the end of FITs and the start of the new regime. We are therefore asking the government to work with us and with the industry as a matter of urgency to fill that gap and ensure a smooth transition next March,” he said. This lack of clarity was also picked up on by Scottish Renewables. The trade association’s senior policy manager Hannah Smith said: “Though we welcome the Call for Evidence into the future for small-scale low-carbon generation, the lack of clarity on support beyond the feed-in tariff is not welcome news.” One of the key announcements today has been the government’s plans to end the export tariff as well as the generation tariff as of 31 March 2019, meaning that all solar installations completed after that date will not receive any financial reimbursement for the excess power that is exported to the grid and used elsewhere. James Court, head of policy and external affairs at the Renewable Energy Association, slammed the situation as “truly bizarre”.
Solar Power Portal 19th July 2018 read more »
The government has confirmed it will close the small-scale feed-in tariff (FiT) on 31 March 2019 as planned and, crucially, close the export tariff to new installations at the same time. This afternoon the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy released two separate documents; a consultation on the closure of the FiT and a separate consultation on the ‘Future of small-scale low carbon generation’. Effectively seven months overdue, the two documents outline how the government intends to handle the closure of the feed-in tariff while requesting proposals on how the government may aid the market in a post-subsidy environment
Solar Power Portal 19th July 2018 read more »
Some small Scottish renewable firms were “forced into liquidation” yesterday by the UK Government’s decision to shutdown the Feed-in-Tariff scheme, according to an industry body.
Energy Voice 20th July 2018 read more »
The government have today released a consultation on the support framework for small scale renewable energy from March 2019. The main subsidy, feed in tariffs, will be scrapped, leading to thousands of job losses in the solar industry in particular. Investors and industry have been waiting for a year for clarity on the new policy framework as to how solar and onshore wind industries might be supported in the future. Doug Parr, Greenpeace Chief Scientist said: “It’s absolutely shocking that just weeks after the government’s main advisers on infrastructure and tackling climate change strongly recommended that the government back wind and solar industries because they are the cheapest and cleanest forms of power forthe UK, that government is hanging these industries out to dry. The government is not planning on financially or politically supporting them at all. Jobs will go, skills will be lost, investment will dry up, and opportunities will be squandered. This is a farcical situation compared to the billion pound government bail-out being considered for the Japanese nuclear company struggling to build a nuclear power station in Wales. It reveals another layer of the government’s nuclear obsession that lacks economic or environmental merit, which will see the UK struggle to meet its climate targets, and leaving our reputation for leadership on tackling climate change in tatters.”
Greenpeace 19th July 2018 read more »
The renewables industry and green groups have accused ministers of striking a major blow against household solar power after the government said a green energy subsidy scheme would end next year without a replacement. The closure of the feed-in tariff (FIT) to new applicants from next April marks the final chapter for the scheme, which has encouraged more than 800,000 households to install solar panels since it was launched in 2010. Solar installations had already largely dried up after the incentives were cut drastically in 2016, but renewables advocates had hoped a replacement would take its place. On Thursday, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy made clear there would be no extension or new alternative.
Guardian 19th July 2018 read more »
A DROP in wind power while solar soared proves Westminster must support a renewables mix, it is claimed – as subsidy support ends. Environmental charity WWF said the latest results from power giant SSE prove the need for a range of eco-energy schemes as conditions change. The Perth company revealed an £80 million fall in predicted first-quarter profits after hot, calm conditions saw consumer demand fall and wind turbines stay still. The report, issued on the same day as the company’s annual general meeting, came as Westminster’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) confirmed plans to end the feed-in tariff scheme, which was designed to encourage the adoption of proven low-carbon technologies.
The National 19th July 2018 read more »