Government’s 52% Feed-in Tariff cut would kill the UK solar sector “stone dead”

The Cut Don’t Kill campaign – a coalition of UK solar power companies including Solarcentury and NGOs including Friends of the Earth – has responded to new Government proposals for a 52% cut in the Feed-in Tariff by warning that such deep cuts would “kill the UK solar industry stone dead”, destroying 4,000 companies and 25,000 jobs.

The Feed-in Tariff pays anyone who has installed a solar power system for generating electricity - the Government’s consultation, published earlier this week, would see the basic rate of Feed-in Tariff fall from 43.3p per kilowatt hour to 21p per kilowatt hour. The campaign's petition can be found on www.oursolarfuture.org.uk

Howard Johns, of the Cut Don’t Kill campaign, said:
“Such deep cuts to the tariff would kill the UK solar industry stone dead. We are happy to accept some cuts, but the Government must recognise that wiping out 4,000 companies and 25,000 jobs by cutting too deeply would be an appalling waste of economic potential. Our message to the Government is cut us, but don’t kill us – we want a sustainable cut that would allow us to survive and deliver the green growth that David Cameron said he was committed to.”

“The Government has a choice – either they can cut like this and make an entire industry go bust, or they can work with us to properly plan the phasing out of the tariff bit by bit, which will produce a flourishing industry that won’t need any subsidy or support.”

Jeremy Leggett Chairman of Solarcentury said:
"In just 18 months, this Government has conspired to destroy one of the very few growth industries in the economy.  Today's announcement puts at risk up to 25,000 solar PV jobs and jeopardises many hundreds of new solar businesses established since 2009. The whole industry has contracts, staff, purchase commitments, stock - all have now been massively compromised by this short-term knee jerk. There is not even any recognition that the industry will need some time to adjust to such a change. There is no question that a "consultation" with an end date of 23rd December slashing tariffs  from 12th December is wide open to legal challenge and we now expect a very serious industry challenge to be mounted.   
The industry's "Cut Don't Kill" campaign, which is being backed by Solarcentury, will be fighting today's announcement through the winter, including the first ever solar PV national lobby day of Parliament on 22nd November.  Anyone who works in or who cares about the fate of this sector needs to be there.  We will not go down without a fight."

The Cut Don’t Kill campaign is organising a day of action in Westminster, scheduled for 22nd November, when the industry will rally to persuade MPs and Ministers to reduce the planned cuts to the Feed-in Tariff.

Join the campaign at www.oursolarfuture.org.uk

 

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