UK Energy Secretary Amber Rudd has confirmed the Conservative Party’s controversial plans to stop subsidies for onshore wind farms, claiming it is top of her agenda at the Department for Energy & Climate Change (DECC).
In an interview with the Sunday Times, Rudd reiterated the Tories’ manifesto pledge to effectively bring an end to the development of new wind farms on UK land, outlining her hopes for the new measures to come into force by May 2016.
The Hastings and Rye MP said: “It will mean no more onshore wind farm subsidies and no more onshore wind farms without local community support. This is really important. I’ve already got my team working on it. That’s going to be one of the first things we’re going to do.”
The Conservatives claim that onshore wind farms often fail to win public support, and are unable by themselves to provide the firm capacity that a stable energy system requires.
By contrast she also said that millions more homes should have solar panels on their roofs, vowing to “unleash a new solar revolution” across Britain. Ms Rudd indicated she would back the continued expansion of household solar panels, which are subsidised by consumers through levies on energy bills.
The Coalition government introduced a generous subsidy scheme called the Feed in Tariffs to encourage households to install solar panels, triggering a boom that far exceeded ministers’ expectations and in total about 640,000 homes now have panels installed. While the payments are less generous than they once were, a household can still expect to make thousands of pounds in profit by installing panels meaning they recoup their money within 7 to 8 years and thereafter make profit, according to the Solar Trade Association.
An interesting statement of intent from this new Government – early on I think!
Eco2 Solar Ltd, Worcestershire, England