Search

Camden Council to cancel 1,000 solar panels after government cuts

PUBLISHED: 17:08 25 January 2012

Workmen installing solar panels

Workmen installing solar panels

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Camden Council is set to pull the plug on plans to install solar panels on 1,000 properties after the government slashed green subsidies.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change announced last year that it was halving feed-in-tariffs, prompting a legal challenge from green groups and businesses that feared it would trigger a fall in demand for panels.

Camden’s cabinet member for sustainability warned the cuts have “damaged businesses” and could result in job losses.

Cllr Sean Birch said: “We had signed a contract to install solar panels in 1,000 street properties, and the fact that the government has changed the goal posts means this is not going to happen now. The council is going to be worse off because we were going to be generating revenues from the electricity at a time when money is scarce.

“This has damaged people’s livelihoods and damaged projects to cut carbon emissions.”

Feed-in-tariffs are the payments given for electricity produced by solar panels that goes back into the National Grid.

Consumers and companies were given just a few weeks notice that tariffs would be slashed from 43p to 21p per kilowatt from December 12 last year.

The Court of Appeal yesterday (Wednesday 25) upheld a High Court decision which found the cuts were unlawful because they were brought in before the end of the official consultation, giving fresh hope to campaigners hoping the cuts might be reversed.

But the subsidy slash has already been felt in manby small firms.

Dermot Barnes, director of the Muswell Hill-based renewable energy firm Ecodomus, said: “We have had to make two of our eight employees redundant and the rest of us are on short hours. It has had a very damaging impact on the whole business.

“The feed-in-tariff was a very positive way of motivating people to invest in renewable energy and support an industry that otherwise wouldn’t get off the ground.”

Mr Barnes, who set up the company three and a half years ago, said he faces making more redundancies.

Martin Hurrell, a senior building conveyer at Bedford Estate, a property company based in Bloomsbury, said the cuts will have a “cooling effect” on many businesses that planned to install solar panels.

A Department of Environment and Climate Change spokeswoman said: “Our proposals allow social housing and local authority organisations to claim a tariff, which would provide around a five per cent rate of return on the investment, which is what the feed-in-tariff scheme was originally designed to generate.”

The department said they are “considering our options” following the Court of Appeal decision.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

09:11

A man has died after a fire broke out in a first floor flat on Brassey Road in West Hampstead.

09:18

Highgate’s historic Prince of Wales pub has temporarily closed for a £250,000 refurbishment but its new manager has moved to allay fears that the traditional boozer will lose its character.

Friday, November 16, 2018

I live in the north west of London in the United Kingdom. Like the rest of the country, I have been looking on in bewilderment at the Brexit deal while politicians on both sides of the house vie for political supremacy. Divisions in government make for good news headlines but do nothing for the public’s confidence in its institutions.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Normally we celebrate one business of the week – but today we’ve got three!

Friday, November 16, 2018

A Routemaster bus will take 72 passengers on a journey through Greek Cypriot history, via Camden and Holloway, on Sunday.

Friday, November 16, 2018

The latest twist in the saga of a Hampstead landlord who refuses to pay a controversial levy saw him bring a top barrister to his court hearing.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Opponents of the 100 Avenue Road development suffered a major blow last night as Camden voted through a controversial plan that will funnel seven lorries a day through residential streets in Swiss Cottage.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

The families left homeless by the fire that destroyed the upper floors of Willow House in East Finchley last week said Barnet Council treated them “like ants to be squashed” in the immediate aftermath of the fire.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now