UK govt to adopt feed-in tariffs (!!!!?)
- From Miguel Mendonca.If true this is a very significant development meaning the UK is following the example of Italy for micro generation.Paul------------Government backflip on solar panel policyBy Charles Clover, Environment EditorLast Updated: 12:01am GMT 03/03/2008Householders will be able to make money by fitting solar panels ormini wind turbines to their roofs, under proposals to be announced inthe Budget next week.Those who generate their own renewable energy through the devices willbe able to sell their surplus electricity to the National Grid, at aguaranteed price.Solar panels: Excess electricity generated by home devices will besold back to the National GridSolar panels: Excess electricity generated by home devices will besold back to the National GridThe scheme, known as "feed in tariffs", gives long-term financialsecurity to homeowners who instal the expensive electricity generationequipment.It has been highly successful in Germany but the Government is said tohave held out against new rules for small-scale power generation sinceLabour was elected in 1997. There are more solar panels in the Germancity of Freiburg than in the whole of Britain.The Government has now decided to embrace feed-in tariffs.Malcolm Wickes, the energy minister, told an evidence session on theEnergy Bill the Government is looking at new proposals to boostmicro-generation - where homes and businesses produce their ownelectricity - including a feed-in tariff.The Conservatives said the Government decision to consider feed intariffs represented a massive U-turn. They also claimed it was a newexample of Gordon Brown's government "stealing" a Tory policy,following decisions to raise the threshold of inheritance tax andpinch Tory plans for taxing flights not passengers. David Cameronannounced the Tories' support for feed in tariffs at Greenpeace'soffices just before Christmas.Peter Ainsworth, the Tory front-bench environment spokesman, said:"This is a huge U-turn. I don't mind if the Government pinches ourpolicies because it indicates that we are leading the debate on ideasfor dealing with climate change."It is a pity that the Government has done nothing for 10 years whenit could have come up with our policies. If they mean what they say itwill transform the market for electricity generation in this country.The question is are they serious? Or are they just saying things thatwe said because they know they are right and popular?"John Sauven, executive director of Greenpeace: said: "At last theGovernment is giving in to common sense. Feed-in tariffs have beenproven the world over to be the most effective and economic way ofcreating a successful renewables sector."This Government has clung to a complex mechanism that costs more thanfeed in tariffs and delivers less. If we are to meet our commitmentson renewable energy we will need this kind of low cost and effectivesupport for clean technologies to really take off."A spokesman for the Department for Business, Enterprise and RegulatoryReform said the proposals to create feed in tariffs formicro-generation would not affect large renewables schemes, whichwould continue to be funded by the Renewables Obligation, whichministers still considered "fit for purpose".New EU targets state Britain must generate 15 per cent of its energyfrom renewable sources by 2020.
208 S. Green St., #5
Tehachapi CA 93561-1741 USA
661 325 9590, 661 472 1657 mobile
World Wind Energy Conference 2008: Community Power June 24-26, Kingston, Ontario