Orkney MSP Liam McArthur has highlighted his concerns at the recent decision by the UK Conservative Government to close prematurely the Renewables Obligation for onshore wind projects.
Speaking following a Ministerial Statement on the issue in the Scottish Parliament this afternoon by Energy Minister, Fergus Ewing MSP, Mr McArthur said:
“I am deeply concerned about this decision by the new UK Conservative Government and the way it has been taken. While the party made no secret during the recent election of wanting to cut subsidies for new onshore wind projects, what they have done is potentially pull the rug out from under many existing projects.
“It is still unclear precisely how this planned change will work in practice, but it has done nothing for public and investor confidence. It is vital, therefore, that UK Ministers act quickly to lift the uncertainty by clarifying how the so-called ‘grace periods’ will work for existing planned projects and what their intentions are with regards to other elements of renewables support. In particular, we need to know if the specific islands strike price, introduced by the former Liberal Democrat UK Energy Secretary, Ed Davey, is to be honoured.
“Having recently completed the complex process of Electricity Market Reform, this handbrake turn by the incoming Conservative Government is the last thing that was needed. It has the potential to hurt consumers, cost communities and undermine companies, many of them in Orkney”.