Last week, DECC appeared to comprehensively re-write its rule book, and more change may be coming.
What’s been happening? The BG Energy Solutions team explains…
Glancing through DECC’s web pages shows how busy the Department of Energy & Climate Change has been. On the face of it, few changes seem positive for the low carbon sector.
Danger in the wings
DECC’s first hint at its new ideals came in Amber Rudd’s Emergency Budget response. Here, she laid the seeds for DECC’s agenda. It places free markets and value for money first.
Then, concrete announcements began to hit the headlines. The news that onshore wind subsidies were for the chop had already fallen on June 18, 2015. But after Ms Rudd outlined DECC’s priorities to the Energy and Climate Change Committee, more words followed.
On July 22, 2015, measures were laid out which removed much of the subsidy available for low carbon generation. Details on the precise future of the Levy Control Framework (LCF) are still to come.
The very next day, DECC revealed it was axing the Green Deal Finance Company in its entirety. The Green Deal has arguably been unsuccessful, but its removal came as another tough blow to a sector already reeling.
In addition, DECC is in strife internally. Red tape reduction measures and hints at Department-wide staff cuts all make for a period of unprecedented change.
Green lobby response
Reaction to DECC’s moves has been sour. Alasdair Cameron, from Friends of the Earth, says the Government is planning an all-out assault on the Green Economy.
The business side response has followed. Veolia Executive Vice President Estelle Brachlianoff argues that the government’s U-turn on renewable energy risks sending this country back to the dark ages of relying only on fossil fuel.
What to do next?
Much consultation on green taxation and business efficiency is still to come.
DECC’s first hand has been poor for low carbon. But history shows businesses which work with policymakers are the most successful.
Hard work, fact-driven lobbying and delivering responses to the Conservative’s consultations must now be the key. All DECC’s consultation documents are online here.