Posted on: 09/02/2016
Political debate over the future of renewable energy subsidies has continued, with MPs reinstating the UK Government’s measures into the Energy Bill.
Opposition peers in the House of Lords had rejected the plans for an early end to the Renewables Obligation (RO) for onshore wind farms.
But MPs on the House of Commons’ Energy Bill committee have put the measure back into the legislation.
The Bill will head to its report stage and a further reading in the House of Commons before being sent back to the Lords, with ministers expecting the law to receive royal assent by the end of the month.
Energy minister Andrea Leadsom told the committee that the promise to end subsidies for new onshore wind farms had been a clear commitment in the Tories’ manifesto ahead of the General Election.
She said her party’s majority in the Commons gave it a clear mandate for action.
Ending the RO a year earlier than originally intended would help to protect consumers from rising bills, she argued.
MPs also reinstated a grace period for projects that had a grid offer, planning consent and access to land rights by 18 June 2015.
FiT cuts go ahead too
Meanwhile, Liberal Democrat peers have failed in their bid to block the UK Government’s cuts to Feed-in Tariffs.
Baroness Featherstone argued that the cuts needed to be more gradual to allow the solar sector to continue to grow.
But Energy Minister Lord Bourne said that if the cuts weren’t made at the current levels then the whole scheme would have to close.