The We Support Solar group has launched a campaign for the government to add 10p to the proposed feed-in tariff, set to be implemented in the first quarter of 2010. The introduction of a UK feed-in tariff was set out by the government in July and has given the We Support Solar group some cause for concern regarding the long term effectiveness of making the UK solar industry competitive with those of Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic. In a move set to highlight certain deficiencies in the proposed tariff legislation the We Support Solar website is currently urging people to petition MPs via their website with suggestions for the tariff before the consultation period finishes within the next few weeks.
The main concern among the solar industry lobby, most vociferously voiced by the members of We Support Solar, is that the rate paid by energy companies for electricity by means of solar energy will not be high enough to attract investment in the new UK sector. Indeed, the We Support Solar website has quoted that a failure to act on this particular piece of legislation would see the UK fail to catch up with its EU competitors on solar installation.
Citing the benefits of adding 10p to the proposed feed-in tariff the We Support Solar website claims the following advantages for the UK economy:
- 28,000 UK skilled solar power jobs by 2014
- Over 400,000 new residential solar PV installations by 2014
- Additional investment in UK solar PV manufacturing building on established centres in Wrexham, South Wales and County Durham
Certainly, with the announcement from Downing Street this year that Gordon Brown is planning to instigate a ‘green new deal’, using new renewable energies to revitalise the flagging economy, government action following the consultancy process will be under the microscope. The online campaign ultimately requests that MPs contact Ed Milliband, Secretary of the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to lay out these specific demands. Whether or not the government does act to introduce a truly workable tariff system will determine whether recent rhetoric represents a real desire to fight climate change or merely court the ‘green’ lobby at a difficult time for Brown’s premiership.
For more information on the campaign, please visit: