Scotland and Wales call for better engagement on renewables

12th August 2015

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Generation ,
  • Renewable ,
  • Devolved government



Cuts to renewables subsidies have not been properly discussed with the Scottish and Welsh ministers, according to a letter from both administrations to the UK government.

The letter, from Scottish energy minister Fergus Ewing and Welsh natural resources minister Carl Sargeant, highlights in particular the disproportionate impacts the cuts will have on community renewables projects.

The ministers pour doubt on statements by officials at the energy and climate department (Decc) that they are unable to assess the likely impact of restricting support for onshore wind under the renewables obligation (RO) and the cancellation of pre-accreditation for the Feed in Tariff (FiT).

For instance, the impact assessment for ending the RO for onshore wind early states that there is little economic difference between continuing the current level of support and for ending it, the ministers say. However, the benefit of the cuts accrues in the shorter term while the costs accrue in the longer term, they note.

Both ministers say they are very concerned that they were not involved in this decision, since funding the long-term costs will fall on future administrations, and managing the economic and climate impacts lie within the remits of the devolved governments.

The ministers complain that under proposed changes to the accreditation process for the FiT, developers will not know what tariff they will receive when they begin to develop a project.

This is likely to stall the community energy sector beyond projects that have been pre-accredited by 22 July, with a knock-on effect on local jobs and the supply chain, the letter states.

While both ministers say they recognise that the cost of developments of renewables projects is generally falling, they argue that the lack of discussion and advance notice of the changes will have an impact that is "more disruptive than necessary".

"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 current proposals will significantly damage the prospects for this future if the local ownership and benefits of projects are not considered within the support regime," Ewing and Sargeant write.


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

Latest environmental legislation round-up

Regulatory gaps between the EU and UK are beginning to appear, warns Neil Howe in this edition’s environmental legislation round-up

4th April 2024

Read more

Dr Julie Riggs issues a call to arms to tackle a modern-day human tragedy

15th March 2024

Read more

The UK’s new biodiversity net gain (BNG) requirements could create 15,000 hectares of woodlands, heath, grasslands, and wetlands and absorb 650,000 tonnes of carbon each year.

13th March 2024

Read more

Campaign group Wild Justice has accused the UK government of trying to relax pollution rules for housebuilders “through the backdoor”.

14th February 2024

Read more

Digital tracking, packaging data delays and new collections provide a waste focus for this edition’s environmental round-up by legislation expert Neil Howe

28th November 2023

Read more

Environmental crimes could result in prison sentences of up to 10 years and company fines of 5% of turnover under a proposed EU law agreed by the European parliament and council.

21st November 2023

Read more

Stuart McLachlan and Dean Sanders discuss their book: The Adventure of Sustainable Performance: Beyond ESG Compliance to Leadership in the New Era.

14th November 2023

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close