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Last week the British Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) was meant to publish its decision about plans to reduce the Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROC) band for onshore wind farms, however at the last minute it announced that it will postpone its decision until a later date.
The delay is believed to have been caused by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne’s, desire to see a more severe cut to the ROCs.
The Scottish government has decided to take matters into its own hands rather than to wait for Westminster to make its mind up.
In a statement the Scottish parliament explained that it “has sought to maintain an approach consistent with the rest of the UK, but without knowing what level of support renewable energy producers are set to receive next year, companies are finding it difficult to make plans for job-creating investments in Scotland. Earlier this week Scottish Power expressed their concern that these delays were harming investor confidence while the CBI has warned that millions of pounds of investment are now at risk.”
Support for renewable energy and particularly onshore wind farms in Scotland has now been set at 0.9 ROCs, the 10% reduction that was originally being considered.
Alex Salmond, the Scottish First Minister, said that “the continuing uncertainty surrounding the outcome of the Renewables Obligation reviews upon which both Governments have consulted risks undermining significantly our ability to meet our shared renewable energy aims.”
“This wholly unnecessary uncertainty is jeopardising future investment – the CBI spoke last Wednesday of millions of pounds of investment now at risk. That is why I wish to make clear that the Scottish Government intends to amend the onshore wind ROC band to 0.9 with effect from April 2013, in line with all available evidence.”
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com