Search

Hundreds of jobs at risk after bid to cut solar feed-in tariffs

10:49 04 October 2015

File photo dated 05/06/07 of solar panels being installed as the number of solar panel installations across the UK has almost doubled in a year, as householders and communities increasingly grasp the chance to generate their own power. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday February 16, 2015. There are now almost 650,000 installations ranging from large-scale solar farms in fields to schemes on homes, schools and police stations, with electricity-generating photovoltaic (PV) panels on one in every 50 households across Britain. The number of subsidised solar farms and large-scale arrays in England has soared from just three in 2012 to 246 in 2014. Residents from Balcombe in West Sussex, at the centre of protests over controversial fracking, have turned to solar - installing 69 panels on a cow-shed as part of long term plans to generate enough power to match the village

File photo dated 05/06/07 of solar panels being installed as the number of solar panel installations across the UK has almost doubled in a year, as householders and communities increasingly grasp the chance to generate their own power. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday February 16, 2015. There are now almost 650,000 installations ranging from large-scale solar farms in fields to schemes on homes, schools and police stations, with electricity-generating photovoltaic (PV) panels on one in every 50 households across Britain. The number of subsidised solar farms and large-scale arrays in England has soared from just three in 2012 to 246 in 2014. Residents from Balcombe in West Sussex, at the centre of protests over controversial fracking, have turned to solar - installing 69 panels on a cow-shed as part of long term plans to generate enough power to match the village's entire electricity use. Industry body the Solar Trade Association's chief executive Paul Barwell puts the popularity of solar down to fa

PA Archive/Press Association Images

More than 450 jobs across the region are at risk due to a proposed cut in government support for solar energy, an industry organisation has claimed.

Up to 27,000 jobs across the UK could be lost as a result of plans by the Department of Energy and Climate Change to cut the feed-in tariff paid for electricity generated by solar rooftop panels by 87pc, according to the Solar Trade Association (STA).

Including jobs in the supply chain as well as those at firms dealing directly with customers, the STA says that as many as 1,870 of the current 2,340 solar jobs in the East of England could go, including 80 in south-west Norfolk, 96 in Norwich and 88 in Broadland. More than 300 jobs are at risk in Suffolk and north Essex.

The association also claims households in many parts of the country would be discriminated against under the proposals which, it says, are based on sunlight levels likely to be found on the south coast of England rather than further north.

Paul Barwell, chief executive at the STA, said: “The government has used sunlight levels you might find in Devon, rather than those found in Yorkshire as they have done in the past. Here at the Solar Trade Association, however, we believe more than just one corner of the country should be able to get the benefits of going solar.”

Responding to criticism over the price cut last month, energy and climate change secretary Amber Rudd said take-up of the scheme had been so great that the original target of supporting 750,000 installations by 2020 was likely to be reached by the end of this year.

The development of technologies supported under the programme
had also resulted in a dramatic reduction in the cost of solar energy, she added.

An alliance of organisations including the National Farmers’ Union, the Confederation of British Industry, social housing providers and local authorities have urged the government to “urgently reconsider” its proposed cuts.

Will your business be affected by the proposed cuts? Call business writer Sabah Meddings on 01603 772879 or email sabah.meddings@archant.co.uk

Search hundreds of local jobs at Jobs24

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Eastern Daily Press visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Eastern Daily Press staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Eastern Daily Press account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Insight

Construction workers at work. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

A construction sector already struggling to meet rising housing demand has been dealt a further blow – after slipping into recession for the first time in four years.

Green 100

cover

Enjoy the Green 100
digital edition

Read

Mustard TV

Meet the Team

Mark Shields

Business Editor

|

Chris Hill

Agricultural and Farming Editor

|

Business Most Read

Awards

Norfolk Future 50 EDP Business Awards Green 100

Business Most Commented

Newsletter Sign Up