NAPIT has urged the Government to take action to combat uncertainty surrounding the future of the microgeneration sector, after it was announced that the Feed-in Tariff scheme would be closing to new applicants.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) made the announcement in response to a consultation on the future of the scheme. The response noted that the majority of respondents to the consultation “strongly disagreed” with ending the export tariff, which allows consumers to receive payment for any excess energy they produce which is exported back into the grid. Despite this, the scheme’s closure was confirmed as part of a move towards “market-based solutions”.
NAPIT’s Chief Operating Officer, David Cowburn, said “NAPIT was amongst the over 90% of respondents to this consultation who opposed the closure of the export tariff, so this announcement is extremely disappointing. Aside from effectively meaning that small-scale generators of energy may end up providing electricity to the grid for free, this move could have serious ramifications for installation standards. At present, the only way for a system to be eligible for the export tariff is if it is installed by somebody who is accredited as competent to do so by the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS). If there is no incentive for consumers to use MCS-accredited installers, they may choose to use tradespeople who do not possess the required skills. The resulting dangerous, poor-quality installations could seriously damage consumer confidence in microgeneration, and undermine the good work done in developing MCS over the last decade.
“We note that the Government are set to disclose more specific proposals ‘in due course’, and hope that these measures close any loopholes which may allow installation standards to drop. These proposals should be published as soon as possible to provide long-term certainty to the sector.”
For more information on the Government’s response to the Feed-in Tariffs Scheme consultation, visit https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/765647/FIT_Closure_Government_Response.pdf.
To find out more about NAPIT’s views on how the UK can be supported in moving towards a low-carbon future, visit https://www.napit.org.uk/pdf/briefing_note_Moving_towards_a_low_carbon_future.pdf.