Scottish, Welsh govts warn of susbsidy cuts impact on community renewables

Wind turbine in UK. Author: Mark Thompson. License: Creative Commons. Attribution 2.0 Generic

August 12 (SeeNews) - The Scottish and Welsh governments on Tuesday warned that community energy projects are likely to be hit harder by the  UK government's moves to curtail support for renewable energy.

A joint letter to the UK government says that as community groups are less able to progress projects quickly, it is likely that the remaining schemes that can be funded under Levy Control Framework (LCF) will be commercial, while the small-scale industry will go into a hiatus until projects become commercially viable without subsidy.

The two governments warned of the likelihood of the community energy sector stalling, with a loss of local supply chains and jobs.

"We both see that the future direction for energy is one of local generation and supply, based on renewable sources, and smart storage and local grid management, with significant local benefit," the letter, signed by Scottish energy minister Fergus Ewing and Welsh natural resources minister Carl Sargeant, said. They add that the UK government's current proposals will damage such prospects and call for dialogue about mechanisms for continuing to support community developments.

The two note that UK energy secretary Amber Rudd has stated she will be willing to consider how community and local energy can be supported.

The letter also expresses concerns about the lack of involvement from the devolved governments in the decision on renewable subsidies and calls for flexibility in the design of grace period criteria.

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Browse all articles from Plamena Tisheva

Plamena has been a UK-focused reporter for many years. As part of the Renewables Now team she is taking a keen interest in policy moves.

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