The future of renewable energy in the UK must be clarified following the recent Budget announcement, organisations have said.
Welcoming the move towards a subsidy-free future for clean energy, the Renewable Energy Association has, however, called for clarity on how the government plans to bring new projects forward, after failing to outline any long-term measures.
The organisation says that while many new solar PV installations will be able to go ahead without subsidy, a route to market that is supported by the government is still necessary.
In the autumn Budget, the chancellor announced that no new funds will be made available for the Levy Control Framework for renewable electricity projects until around 2025. Auctions that have already been confirmed until 2020 will go ahead.
James Court, head of policy and external affairs at the Renewable Energy Association, said that the government’s failure to announce no new support for renewable projects past 2020 was disappointing.
“Onshore wind and solar are already cheaper than new build gas and we have seen huge cost reductions happening in offshore wind, energy from waste and biomass. These are the technologies of the future and the government should be backing them, not blocking their progress.”
Meanwhile, the Solar Trade Association also called for clarity from the government; the whole energy sector needs a clear signal to invest in low carbon power, said Leonie Greene, head of external affairs. She suggested that some of the tax breaks being made available to fossil fuels be extended to renewables to prevent solar power being put at a disadvantage.