Cornish Farmers are not happy bunnies

A report in the Guardian last week claims that the Government is about to make a major u-turn on solar feed-in tariffs for anything larger than a typical domestic installation.

Farmers, community groups and investors as well as the solar industry itself have reacted strongly to the news with some claiming they’ve been ‘stuffed’.

The problem seems to have come from so called ‘Brown sites’ springing up, particularly in the South-West with investors moving in, developing large scale solar farms and getting an excellent return on their investment due to the feed-in tariffs paid.

The Government, worried that large scale installations would cause the allocated ‘money pot’ for tariff payments to run down to quickly have acted by announcing a review of tariffs paid to installations over a certain size.

Ministers maintain that the tariffs were only ever to encourage homeowners to make their homes more carbon neutral, and encourage installations by giving homeowners the opportunity to recoup their savings or pay back loans on monies invested in fitting the panels.

The UK’s housing stock, at present, is a major concern for the Government in reaching it’s carbon reduction targets, given the general age and condition of much of the current housing.

The Guardian believes the cap will be on installations over 50kW capacity – enough to cover more than 15 domestic roofs, which means even barn roof installations could be in jeopardy.

photo credit: gareth rogers

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