PRESS RELEASE: STA Director of Advocacy Léonie Greene scoops Lifetime Achievement award

Solar Trade Association
IMMEDIATE RELEASE
20 September 2019

 

Industry recognition for achievements of Léonie Greene

Seasoned solar campaigner and longstanding member of the STA team wins Lifetime Achievement award at the 2019 Solar & Storage Awards.

This week at the 2019 Solar & Storage Live Awards, STA Director of Advocacy Léonie Greene scooped the Lifetime Achievement award in recognition of her years of dedication to campaigning on behalf of the industry.

Léonie Greene’s commitment to driving solar and decentralised energy in the UK goes back over a decade, having initiated a Decentralised Energy campaign while acting as Political Advisor at Greenpeace in 2006. Over the course of 2007 and 2008, she campaigned in Parliament for the introduction of the Feed-in Tariff in a collaborative effort with the RSPB’s Seb Berry (then of Solarcentury), E3G’s Ed Matthew (then of Friends of the Earth) and Friends of the Earth’s Dave Timms among others, which drove the uptake of solar PV on over 930,000 homes in the UK. [1]

In 2015, Greene and the STA successfully lobbied to extend the life of the Feed-in Tariff, which was under threat of being scrapped altogether at a time when the PV wing of the industry was still at a nascent stage, and more recently in 2018 the seasoned campaigner drove efforts to secure a suitable replacement to the Export Tariff through the Fair4Solar campaign, leading to the development of the Smart Export Guarantee.

In her acceptance speech Greene said “I’ve devoted my life to solar, I think this technology is amazing, and I couldn’t have achieved what I have without having been part of some very effective teams.

Naming a number of colleagues past and present, she went on to list several key policy wins over the years: “We won a whole host of further policies for solar, reworked the FiT very successfully, won sensible RO digressions, permitted development rights, good business rates for ground-mount solar, the backstop PPA, retaining the FiT, and safeguarding export payments.

One thing I am particularly proud of is our work on setting really high standards for solar farms. When [they] first started to appear we faced incredibly hostile media, but by working together and getting across the facts of how beneficial this technology could be for the countryside, we won.

Closing the speech with praise for the solar industry and its role in decarbonisation in particular, she said: “Climate change will only be solved through action, and action happens through you.”

STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett said; “Léonie Greene has been an essential contributor to the success of the solar industry for over a decade. Without her tireless campaigning, for maintaining the Feed-In Tariff, establishing best practice in land management on solar farms and ensuring consumers are treated fairly, solar in the UK would not be where it is today. Her passion for the technology and ability to navigate the political field has produced a slate of successes, big and small, which have all helped lead to the deployment of over 13GW of PV.”

 

ENDS​

 

Editors notes:

[1] Solar Power Portal –  Farewell FiTs: How people, and not just policy, drove UK solar: https://www.solarpowerportal.co.uk/blogs/farewell_fits_how_people_and_not_just_policy_drove_uk_solar

 

 

For further information or to request an interview, please contact:

Name: Jack Dobson-Smith

Title: Public Affairs & Communications Officer

Main line: 0203 637 2946

 

Background on the Solar Trade Association:

The mission of the Solar Trade Association is to empower the UK solar transformation. We are paving the way for solar to deliver the maximum possible share of UK energy by 2030 by enabling a bigger and better solar industry. We represent both solar heat and power plus energy storage, and have a proven track record of winning breakthroughs for all three technologies.