UK: Solar Trade Association welcomes industrial strategy

1/24/17, 12:00 AM -

The Solar Trade Association (STA) has welcomed the publication of the Government’s Industrial Strategy consultation. 

The UK Government’s priority of affordable energy comes at odds with its removal of support for solar, STA says.

The consultation launched by the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) highlights affordable decarbonisation, as well as energy storage as priorities for the Government. Coming shortly after BEIS and Ofgem’s smart power consultation the latest proposals reaffirm Government’s direction of travel towards a modern, flexible network that can deliver clean generation at home, alongside international business opportunities.

Government sees benefits of solar

Paul Barwell, STA Chief Executive, commented: “Solar is key to both the smart energy industrial opportunity and to cost-effective decarbonisation. Indeed, BEIS’ own projections have solar as one of the cheapest forms of clean electricity by 2020. There is now an international expectation that solar will form the backbone of clean power systems in future. We look forward to working with BEIS to remove the needless UK barriers that prevent solar making the exceptional contribution that it can to a competitive, modern economy.

Unlock storage markets

The strong political support for storage in this strategy is warmly welcome. Many of our members stand ready today to deliver intelligent storage solutions across the power system. We look forward to working with Government to unlock storage markets in the UK as quickly as possible."

Contradicting policies

The Government’s priority of affordable energy comes at odds with its removal of support for the cheapest forms of renewable energy, whilst investing in more expensive alternatives. The forthcoming business rates rise for some solar systems will also put off commercial sector investors, who are important stakeholders in the smart energy revolution. The STA is urging Government to align its energy policies to its smart power, affordability and industrial objectives. (HCN)

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