UK: Committee of MPs writes to Energy Secretary criticizing solar cuts


Despite securing a smattering of relatively positive headlines for its apparent retreat from the introduction of severe solar FIT cuts, the U.K. government’s Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has nevertheless come in for stiff criticism from throughout Parliament for pushing through a 64% FIT reduction and an investment cap on renewable spending.

A letter sent by the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee of MPs to energy secretary Amber Rudd has attacked DECC’s inconsistent stance on support for renewable subsidies, attacking the lack of "clarity, consistency and continuity" in government policy on the matter since the Conservatives came to power in May.

The letter said that the energy department "appears to be making unexpected policy decisions that are being criticized routinely in our evidence sessions as being exactly the opposite."

In a meeting with solar investors, the committee learned that investors have been deterred from the renewable energy markets of countries such as Spain and Italy for similar reasons, namely unstable support schemes. A disturbed renewables market is an unattractive one, the committee was told.

In examining DECC’s expenditure, administration and policy, the committee has also warned that the U.K. will find it difficult to hit its pledged climate targets if investment in renewables continues to slow at the pace seen this year. Further cuts will prove additionally injurious to investor confidence, the committee added.

The announcements on Thursday are likely to lead to between 15,000 to 23,000 job losses in the solar industry alone by 2019.

In response to the growing criticism, a DECC spokeswoman trotted out its rather tried-and-tested stock statement, which read: "The government continues to support the low-carbon sector but for this to be sustainable it needs to be driven by competition and innovation, not subsidies."

Popular content

This content is protected by copyright and may not be reused. If you want to cooperate with us and would like to reuse some of our content, please contact:


Related content

Elsewhere on pv magazine...

Leave a Reply

Please be mindful of our community standards.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

By submitting this form you agree to pv magazine using your data for the purposes of publishing your comment.

Your personal data will only be disclosed or otherwise transmitted to third parties for the purposes of spam filtering or if this is necessary for technical maintenance of the website. Any other transfer to third parties will not take place unless this is justified on the basis of applicable data protection regulations or if pv magazine is legally obliged to do so.

You may revoke this consent at any time with effect for the future, in which case your personal data will be deleted immediately. Otherwise, your data will be deleted if pv magazine has processed your request or the purpose of data storage is fulfilled.

Further information on data privacy can be found in our Data Protection Policy.