Comment from the STA on Budget 2017

Leonie Greene, Head of External Affairs;

“It isn’t right that solar is being put at a disadvantage in the UK where it does not benefit from any of the tax breaks available to fossil fuels. The Chancellor recognises our economy has no future without a planet, but is bending over a North Sea barrel to offer fossil fuels even more tax breaks.

Importantly, the Budget states that apart from honouring existing commitments, there will be no new public support for renewables that lead to an increase in consumer bills, until 2025. There is also no increase in carbon pricing, meaning no clear long-term signal for investors.

Let’s be clear; the solar industry is not asking for any new public support – but we urgently need just some of the tax breaks available to fossil fuels today. And the whole energy industry needs a clear signal to continue to invest in low carbon power. We also believe solar can win effectively subsidy-free clean power (CfD) contracts today, so we now hope to see clean power auctions for established technologies resume on that basis.

The Chancellor still has an opportunity to take a small step in the right direction by including solar under the eligible technologies list for Enhanced Capital Allowances in the Finance Bill, when it goes to the Commons.”

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