What if We Stopped Pretending the Climate Apocalypse Can Be Stopped? | The New Yorker

Interesting prospective on climate change, worth reading the whole article.

https://www.newyorker.com/culture/cultural-comment/what-if-we-stopped-pretending?utm_medium=email&utm_source=dailynewsletter&utm_campaign=20092019

The climate apocalypse is coming. To prepare for it, we need to admit that we can’t prevent it.

The climate apocalypse is coming. To prepare for it, we need to admit that we can’t prevent it.

Jonathan Franzen
“There is infinite hope,” Kafka tells us, “only not for us.” This is a fittingly mystical epigram from a writer whose characters strive for ostensibly reachable goals and, tragically or amusingly, never manage to get any closer to them. But it seems to me, in our rapidly darkening world, that the converse of Kafka’s quip is equally true: There is no hope, except for us.

I’m talking, of course, about climate change. The struggle to rein in global carbon emissions and keep the planet from melting down has the feel of Kafka’s fiction. The goal has been clear for thirty years, and despite earnest efforts we’ve made essentially no progress toward reaching it. Today, the scientific evidence verges on irrefutable. If you’re younger than sixty, you have a good chance of witnessing the radical destabilization of life on earth—massive crop failures, apocalyptic fires, imploding economies, epic flooding, hundreds of millions of refugees fleeing regions made uninhabitable by extreme heat or permanent drought. If you’re under thirty, you’re all but guaranteed to witness it.

If you care about the planet, and about the people and animals who live on it, there are two ways to think about this. You can keep on hoping that catastrophe is preventable, and feel ever more frustrated or enraged by the world’s inaction. Or you can accept that disaster is coming, and begin to rethink what it means to have hope.

Even at this late date, expressions of unrealistic hope continue to abound. Hardly a day seems to pass without my reading that it’s time to “roll up our sleeves” and “save the planet”; that the problem of climate change can be “solved” if we summon the collective will. Although this message was probably still true in 1988, when the science became fully clear, we’ve emitted as much atmospheric carbon in the past thirty years as we did in the previous two centuries of industrialization. The facts have changed, but somehow the message stays the same.

Psychologically, this denial makes sense. Despite the outrageous fact that I’ll soon be dead forever, I live in the present, not the future. Given a choice between an alarming abstraction (death) and the reassuring evidence of my senses (breakfast!), my mind prefers to focus on the latter. The planet, too, is still marvelously intact, still basically normal—seasons changing, another election year coming, new comedies on Netflix—and its impending collapse is even harder to wrap my mind around than death. Other kinds of apocalypse, whether religious or thermonuclear or asteroidal, at least have the binary neatness of dying: one moment the world is there, the next moment it’s gone forever. Climate apocalypse, by contrast, is messy. It will take the form of increasingly severe crises compounding chaotically until civilization begins to fray. Things will get very bad, but maybe not too soon, and maybe not for everyone. Maybe not for me.

Some of the denial, however, is more willful. The evil of the Republican Party’s position on climate science is well known, but denial is entrenched in progressive politics, too, or at least in its rhetoric. The Green New Deal, the blueprint for some of the most substantial proposals put forth on the issue, is still framed as our last chance to avert catastrophe and save the planet, by way of gargantuan renewable-energy projects. Many of the groups that support those proposals deploy the language of “stopping” climate change, or imply that there’s still time to prevent it. Unlike the political right, the left prides itself on listening to climate scientists, who do indeed allow that catastrophe is theoretically avertable. But not everyone seems to be listening carefully. The stress falls on the word theoretically.

Our atmosphere and oceans can absorb only so much heat before climate change, intensified by various feedback loops, spins completely out of control. The consensus among scientists and policy-makers is that we’ll pass this point of no return if the global mean temperature rises by more than two degrees Celsius (maybe a little more, but also maybe a little less). The I.P.C.C.—the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change—tells us that, to limit the rise to less than two degrees, we not only need to reverse the trend of the past three decades. We need to approach zero net emissions, globally, in the next three decades.

This is, to say the least, a tall order. It also assumes that you trust the I.P.C.C.’s calculations. New research, described last month in Scientific American, demonstrates that climate scientists, far from exaggerating the threat of climate change, have underestimated its pace and severity. To project the rise in the global mean temperature, scientists rely on complicated atmospheric modelling. They take a host of variables and run them through supercomputers to generate, say, ten thousand different simulations for the coming century, in order to make a “best” prediction of the rise in temperature. When a scientist predicts a rise of two degrees Celsius, she’s merely naming a number about which she’s very confident: the rise will be at least two degrees. The rise might, in fact, be far higher.

As a non-scientist, I do my own kind of modelling. I run various future scenarios through my brain, apply the constraints of human psychology and political reality, take note of the relentless rise in global energy consumption (thus far, the carbon savings provided by renewable energy have been more than offset by consumer demand), and count the scenarios in which collective action averts catastrophe. The scenarios, which I draw from the prescriptions of policy-makers and activists, share certain necessary conditions.

The first condition is that every one of the world’s major polluting countries institute draconian conservation measures, shut down much of its energy and transportation infrastructure, and completely retool its economy. According to a recent paper in Nature, the carbon emissions from existing global infrastructure, if operated through its normal lifetime, will exceed our entire emissions “allowance”—the further gigatons of carbon that can be released without crossing the threshold of catastrophe. (This estimate does not include the thousands of new energy and transportation projects already planned or under construction.) To stay within that allowance, a top-down intervention needs to happen not only in every country but throughout every country. Making New York City a green utopia will not avail if Texans keep pumping oil and driving pickup trucks.

The actions taken by these countries must also be the right ones. Vast sums of government money must be spent without wasting it and without lining the wrong pockets. Here it’s useful to recall the Kafkaesque joke of the European Union’s biofuel mandate, which served to accelerate the deforestation of Indonesia for palm-oil plantations, and the American subsidy of ethanol fuel, which turned out to benefit no one but corn farmers.

Finally, overwhelming numbers of human beings, including millions of government-hating Americans, need to accept high taxes and severe curtailment of their familiar life styles without revolting. They must accept the reality of climate change and have faith in the extreme measures taken to combat it. They can’t dismiss news they dislike as fake. They have to set aside nationalism and class and racial resentments. They have to make sacrifices for distant threatened nations and distant future generations. They have to be permanently terrified by hotter summers and more frequent natural disasters, rather than just getting used to them. Every day, instead of thinking about breakfast, they have to think about death.

Call me a pessimist or call me a humanist, but I don’t see human nature fundamentally changing anytime soon. I can run ten thousand scenarios through my model, and in not one of them do I see the two-degree target being met.

To judge from recent opinion polls, which show that a majority of Americans (many of them Republican) are pessimistic about the planet’s future, and from the success of a book like David Wallace-Wells’s harrowing “The Uninhabitable Earth,” which was released this year, I’m not alone in having reached this conclusion. But there continues to be a reluctance to broadcast it. Some climate activists argue that if we publicly admit that the problem can’t be solved, it will discourage people from taking any ameliorative action at all. This seems to me not only a patronizing calculation but an ineffectual one, given how little progress we have to show for it to date. The activists who make it remind me of the religious leaders who fear that, without the promise of eternal salvation, people won’t bother to behave well. In my experience, nonbelievers are no less loving of their neighbors than believers. And so I wonder what might happen if, instead of denying reality, we told ourselves the truth.

First of all, even if we can no longer hope to be saved from two degrees of warming, there’s still a strong practical and ethical case for reducing carbon emissions. In the long run, it probably makes no difference how badly we overshoot two degrees; once the point of no return is passed, the world will become self-transforming. In the shorter term, however, half measures are better than no measures. Halfway cutting our emissions would make the immediate effects of warming somewhat less severe, and it would somewhat postpone the point of no return. The most terrifying thing about climate change is the speed at which it’s advancing, the almost monthly shattering of temperature records. If collective action resulted in just one fewer devastating hurricane, just a few extra years of relative stability, it would be a goal worth pursuing.

In fact, it would be worth pursuing even if it had no effect at all. To fail to conserve a finite resource when conservation measures are available, to needlessly add carbon to the atmosphere when we know very well what carbon is doing to it, is simply wrong. Although the actions of one individual have zero effect on the climate, this doesn’t mean that they’re meaningless. Each of us has an ethical choice to make. During the Protestant Reformation, when “end times” was merely an idea, not the horribly concrete thing it is today, a key doctrinal question was whether you should perform good works because it will get you into Heaven, or whether you should perform them simply because they’re good—because, while Heaven is a question mark, you know that this world would be better if everyone performed them. I can respect the planet, and care about the people with whom I share it, without believing that it will save me.

More than that, a false hope of salvation can be actively harmful. If you persist in believing that catastrophe can be averted, you commit yourself to tackling a problem so immense that it needs to be everyone’s overriding priority forever. One result, weirdly, is a kind of complacency: by voting for green candidates, riding a bicycle to work, avoiding air travel, you might feel that you’ve done everything you can for the only thing worth doing. Whereas, if you accept the reality that the planet will soon overheat to the point of threatening civilization, there’s a whole lot more you should be doing.

Our resources aren’t infinite. Even if we invest much of them in a longest-shot gamble, reducing carbon emissions in the hope that it will save us, it’s unwise to invest all of them. Every billion dollars spent on high-speed trains, which may or may not be suitable for North America, is a billion not banked for disaster preparedness, reparations to inundated countries, or future humanitarian relief. Every renewable-energy mega-project that destroys a living ecosystem—the “green” energy development now occurring in Kenya’s national parks, the giant hydroelectric projects in Brazil, the construction of solar farms in open spaces, rather than in settled areas—erodes the resilience of a natural world already fighting for its life. Soil and water depletion, overuse of pesticides, the devastation of world fisheries—collective will is needed for these problems, too, and, unlike the problem of carbon, they’re within our power to solve. As a bonus, many low-tech conservation actions (restoring forests, preserving grasslands, eating less meat) can reduce our carbon footprint as effectively as massive industrial changes.

All-out war on climate change made sense only as long as it was winnable. Once you accept that we’ve lost it, other kinds of action take on greater meaning. Preparing for fires and floods and refugees is a directly pertinent example. But the impending catastrophe heightens the urgency of almost any world-improving action. In times of increasing chaos, people seek protection in tribalism and armed force, rather than in the rule of law, and our best defense against this kind of dystopia is to maintain functioning democracies, functioning legal systems, functioning communities. In this respect, any movement toward a more just and civil society can now be considered a meaningful climate action. Securing fair elections is a climate action. Combatting extreme wealth inequality is a climate action. Shutting down the hate machines on social media is a climate action. Instituting humane immigration policy, advocating for racial and gender equality, promoting respect for laws and their enforcement, supporting a free and independent press, ridding the country of assault weapons—these are all meaningful climate actions. To survive rising temperatures, every system, whether of the natural world or of the human world, will need to be as strong and healthy as we can make it.

And then there’s the matter of hope. If your hope for the future depends on a wildly optimistic scenario, what will you do ten years from now, when the scenario becomes unworkable even in theory? Give up on the planet entirely? To borrow from the advice of financial planners, I might suggest a more balanced portfolio of hopes, some of them longer-term, most of them shorter. It’s fine to struggle against the constraints of human nature, hoping to mitigate the worst of what’s to come, but it’s just as important to fight smaller, more local battles that you have some realistic hope of winning. Keep doing the right thing for the planet, yes, but also keep trying to save what you love specifically—a community, an institution, a wild place, a species that’s in trouble—and take heart in your small successes. Any good thing you do now is arguably a hedge against the hotter future, but the really meaningful thing is that it’s good today. As long as you have something to love, you have something to hope for.

In Santa Cruz, where I live, there’s an organization called the Homeless Garden Project. On a small working farm at the west end of town, it offers employment, training, support, and a sense of community to members of the city’s homeless population. It can’t “solve” the problem of homelessness, but it’s been changing lives, one at a time, for nearly thirty years. Supporting itself in part by selling organic produce, it contributes more broadly to a revolution in how we think about people in need, the land we depend on, and the natural world around us. In the summer, as a member of its C.S.A. program, I enjoy its kale and strawberries, and in the fall, because the soil is alive and uncontaminated, small migratory birds find sustenance in its furrows.

There may come a time, sooner than any of us likes to think, when the systems of industrial agriculture and global trade break down and homeless people outnumber people with homes. At that point, traditional local farming and strong communities will no longer just be liberal buzzwords. Kindness to neighbors and respect for the land—nurturing healthy soil, wisely managing water, caring for pollinators—will be essential in a crisis and in whatever society survives it. A project like the Homeless Garden offers me the hope that the future, while undoubtedly worse than the present, might also, in some ways, be better. Most of all, though, it gives me hope for today.

Jonathan Franzen is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker and the author of, most recently, the novel “Purity.”

Regards,

Rob Such

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Decision for access to half-hourly electricity data for settlement purposes | Ofgem

Ofgem are finally going public on the real reason they want every home to have a smart meter – so you can be billed in half hourly chunks. This has always been the plan so why have an advertising campaign that pretends that smart meters will save consumers money by making them better informed about their energy consumption?

https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/publications-and-updates/decision-access-half-hourly-electricity-data-settlement-purposes?utm_medium=email&utm_source=dotMailer&utm_campaign=Daily-Alert_25-06-2019&utm_content=Decision+for+access+to+half-hourly+electricity+data+for+settlement+purposes&dm_i=1QCB,6COIH,F31GLA,P47UT,1

Decision for access to half-hourly electricity data for settlement purposes

In order to settle customers half-hourly, suppliers need access to their customers’ half-hourly data from their smart meter. Under the current rules, domestic consumers’ half-hourly consumption data can only be accessed for settlement if they have given opt-in consent, and suppliers can only access half-hourly data from microbusinesses for settlement if they have not opted-out. As part of our work on market-wide settlement reform we have been considering the future of these rules, as well as other issues related to data access for settlement. In July 2018 we published a consultation seeking views on a number of questions, in order to realise t the benefits of settlement reform whilst ensuring that consumers’ privacy is appropriately safeguarded. Alongside the consultation document we also published a Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA).

We have carefully considered the responses to our consultation and are now setting out our decisions, set out in this decision document. Alongside the decision document we are also publishing an updated version (version 2) of our DPIA, which reflects the decisions made following the consultation.

Regards,

Rob Such

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Solar farms could be wildlife havens that tackle biodiversity crisis | New Scientist

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2207491-solar-farms-could-be-wildlife-havens-that-tackle-biodiversity-crisis/?utm_medium=NLC&utm_source=NSNS&utm_campaign=2019-0626-GLOBAL-NSDAY&utm_content=NSDAY

Solar farms could be wildlife havens that tackle biodiversity crisis

Are solar farms good for biodiversity?Adrian Arbib/Alamy

By Adam Vaughan

Solar farms could help address the UK’s biodiversity crisis by providing habitats and food for wildlife, according to research gathered by a new project.

The online SPIES tool by the Universities of Lancaster and York found evidence from 450 peer-reviewed papers for actions solar farm owners can take to benefit nature, such as planting and maintaining hedgerows.

“There is limited research on the impacts of solar parks, hence the tool,” says Alona Armstrong of Lancaster University, who developed it with the solar industry, plus conservation groups, ecologists, landowners and the UK’s National Farmers’ Union. …

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Rob Such

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Seven charts that explain what net zero emissions means for the UK | New Scientist

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2201416-seven-charts-that-explain-what-net-zero-emissions-means-for-the-uk/

Seven charts that explain what net zero emissions means for the UK

The Committee on Climate Change has urged the government to adopt a target of net zero emissions by 2050. These seven charts show how that might unfold, and what it means for the UK economy

Environment 2 May 2019

Universal Images Group North America LLC/Alamy Stock Photo

By Adam Vaughan

Here’s a selection of some of the most pertinent numbers that the Committee on Climate Change has compiled for the government in its report, ranging from expectations about the UK’s future emissions, sectors which it expects will emit the most greenhouse gases and some surprising numbers about the transition to electric cars.

The UK has already cut greenhouse gas emissions 40 per cent on 1990 levels, looking solely at “territorial” emissions, rather than ones based on consumption of imported goods and services. Before 2050, there are interim targets, including a 57 per cent cut by 2030, which the government admits it’s currently set to miss.

Previous cuts have been very uneven across the economy. The heavy lifting has been done by the power sector booting out coal in favour of more renewable sources and gas power stations. According to the most recent numbers, transport has replaced the power sector as the biggest emitter.

This chart shows the UK’s impact on global temperature, relative to now, from adopting a net zero target compared to today’s 80 per cent plan. As the line goes up, we are adding to global warming. As it goes down, the UK contributes to global cooling.

Today, farming and aviation are relatively small emitters compared to other sectors. But if the net zero target is achieved, their hard-to-treat nature means they will be the big two remaining rumps of emissions in 2050. That is why negative emissions measures are needed, such as tree-planting.

In the past, most of the emissions cuts have happened behind the scenes, through technological changes. Kettles still boil the same, regardless of whether powered by electrons generated from a coal power station or wind farm. This chart shows how more than 60 per cent of future measures require some sort of consumer behaviour changes too.

The government plans to ban new petrol and diesel car sales by 2040, but a 2030 goal would save more money, says the Committee on Climate Change. Switching to electric cars will cost society around £1bn a year in the early 2020s, in terms of costs of buying the cars, investing in energy networks and charging points. Later, they are expected to save the UK billions of pounds annually.

One of the Committee on Climate Change’s key findings is the cost of a net zero target will be the same as the existing one of an 80 per cent cut. That’s because the cost of technologies has fallen rapidly since the current target was enshrined in law 11 years ago. This chart shows just how much faster the cost of batteries has fallen than the group originally expected.

Regards,

Rob Such

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07900 488 936
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The 2018 heatwave may not have been possible without climate change | New Scientist

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2199601-the-2018-heatwave-may-not-have-been-possible-without-climate-change/??utm_medium=NLC&utm_source=NSNS&utm_campaign=2019-0416-GLOBAL-NSDAY&utm_content=NSDAY

The 2018 heatwave may not have been possible without climate change

Environment 15 April 2019

The northern hemisphere experienced a long heatwave in 2018Tom Nicholson/Lnp/REX/Shutterstock

By Adam Vaughan

We know climate change made the heatwave that swept the northern hemisphere last year more likely, but is it possible to say that it actually caused it?

In a bold claim, researchers are suggesting the extent of the event would have been impossible without the carbon dioxide humanity has pumped into the atmosphere. Global warming appears to be caught red handed.

From record temperatures in Japan to wildfires in Sweden, many regions were hit by extreme heat between May and July 2018. A 5 million square …

Regards,

Rob Such

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‘Unprecedented’ events send UK power market into negative pricing for six hours straight | Current N ews

https://www.current-news.co.uk/news/unprecedented-events-send-uk-power-market-to-negative-pricing-for-six-hours-straight

‘Unprecedented’ events send UK power market into negative pricing for six hours straight

Image: Getty.

25

Mar / 2019

12:28

UK wholesale power prices dipped into negative pricing for more than six hours yesterday following an “unprecedented turn of events” in the country’s supply and demand profile.

Yesterday (Sunday 24 March 2019) witnessed the UK’s system price dip to -£50/MWh from settlement period 21 (10:00 – 10:30am) and remain negative until 4:30pm as the country basked in unseasonably warm and bright conditions.

Indeed, Limejump’s energy trading team noted that the price fell as low as -£70.24/MWh during settlement periods 28 and 29, a steep decline that it attributed to the “shock effect of the sudden sunny weather” that sent the public outdoors and system demand falling in tandem, resulting in what the energy trader billed as an “unprecedented turn of events”.

Drax’s Electricity Insights Report has portrayed the event, showing the impact on the country’s wholesale price curve.

Image: Drax Electricity Insights.
Tweets from National Grid’s ESO Control Room Twitter account yesterday morning placed national electricity demand at 30.7GW at 10am and 31.2GW at 11am, a steep decline on the 34GW of demand recorded the previous Sunday.

This occurred at the same time as significantly higher than expected quantities of renewable power on the grid. Limejump noted that solar generation peaked at 7.7GW yesterday, far above the 6.5GW that was forecast and more than double the seasonal average of 3.5GW.

At the same time wind generation did not dip below 25% of supply from 5am onwards and, from 11am – 1pm, combined with solar to provide more than 49% of the country’s power.

Limejump added that the “black swan” event left National Grid with no option but to instruct power plants to turn down.

It’s not the first time the UK has witnessed wholesale prices dip into negative figures, with periods in both January and August last year witnessing negative pricing on the back of surging wind production.

Regards,

Rob Such

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Zero Carbon Homes axe costing consumers three-times energy cap savings | Current News

https://www.current-news.co.uk/news/zero-carbon-homes-axe-costing-consumers-three-times-energy-cap-savings

Zero Carbon Homes axe costing consumers three-times energy cap savings

The Eddington development in Cambridge has seen significant amounts of rooftop solar deployed on new housing units despite the Zero Carbon Policy homes scrapping. Image: G&H Sustainability.
11
Feb / 2019
14:20

Former chancellor George Osborne’s decision to scrap the Zero Carbon homes policy is costing occupants of new-build homes more than £200 per year, essentially three times the targeted savings from Ofgem’s price cap.
New analysis from the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit has found that the policy move, one of the newly-elected Conservative government’s first in the spring of 2015, has cost owners of new-build homes £120 million in additional costs to date.
And that figure is set to rise to more than £2 billion by 2020 as further newly-built homes are occupied.
ECIU analysis has found that each new build home that’s occupied today will cost an extra £208 – 233 to heat, effectively three-times the average £76-per-year saving from the government-backed, Ofgem-enforced price cap.
The Zero Carbon Homes policy was due to come into effect in 2016, having been first announced in 2006 by then-chancellor Gordon brown. The policy would have ensured that all new houses would have had to generate as much energy on-site as they consume, dramatically slashing energy bills and delivering vital carbon emissions reductions from the built environment.
But the policy was scrapped just months before it was due to come into force, prompting angry responses from opposition parliamentarians and the energy and building sectors alike.
Ex-energy secretary Ed Davey, who became a staunch critic of Conservative energy policy having lost his seat at the 2015 election, described the scrapping of the Zero Carbon Homes policy as the “worst thing the Tories have done” in the autumn of 2015, comparing the decision against a packed field of clean energy cuts.
In addition, the ECIU points to the fact that carbon emissions from UK homes have in fact risen over the past two years, coinciding with a period of time in which the UK has lacked a comprehensive domestic energy efficiency scheme.
Jonathan Marshall, head of analysis at the ECIU, said that successive governments have struggled to devise effective domestic energy efficiency schemes, contrasting with the Zero Carbon Homes policu that “could have made a real difference”.
“As well as future-proofing new homes, the policy would have saved families money, reduced Britain’s vulnerability to energy supply shocks, and cut carbon emissions.
“Tackling new build homes is one of the easiest ways of improving the UK’s leaky housing stock, and reintroducing this policy could also deliver a boost to firms involved in insulation and low-carbon heating,” Marshall said.
His sentiments were echoed by Paula Higgins, chief executive at the Homeowners Alliance, who said that energy bills was one of the most regular concerns raised by consumers.
“One of our long-running campaigns is for better new-build homes; low standards, thin walls and inadequate heating are problems that we see time and again. Homes should be built to the highest standards to be fit for this and future generations; government and industry need to recognise that it’s in everyone’s interest to get this right.”

Regards,

Rob Such

rob
07900 488 936
01344 988 775
www.rsrenewables.com

RS Renewables Ltd stores and uses personal data to be able work with you in relation to a contract we have/are working to put in place with you or the company you represent, or to investigate whether you would be interested in working with RS Renewables Ltd. Please see our i<a href="mailto:nfo

Government confirms export tariff cull | Solar Power Portal

https://www.solarpowerportal.co.uk/news/government_confirms_export_tariff_cull

Government confirms export tariff cull

Liam Stoker
The export tariff will close to new applicants at the same time as the generation tariff, the government has confirmed, despite overwhelming opposition to the plans.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy confirmed in a response to this summer’s consultation today, claiming a fixed and flat-rate export tariff does “not align with the wider government objectives” of a move toward market-based solutions.

The feed-in tariff scheme will therefore now close in full to new applicants from 31 March 2019.

However, the government has noted responses to the consultation which stressed the need for a route to market for small-scale generators after the expiration of the scheme, and has committed to report on specific proposals for such arrangements “in due course”.

Furthermore, BEIS has also decided to implement some time-limited extensions proposed for all ‘MCS-scale’ – expressly defined as solar and wind systems with a net capacity of 50kW or less – that have not pre-registered as a school or community energy installation from 31 January to 31 March 2020.

Other conclusions reached in the consultation document include;

  • There will be no reallocation of unused capacity, said to be in line with the government’s commitment to keeping energy bills as low as possible;
  • Net costs of metered exports will be brought into the levelisation process, to be applied to metered exports from installations of all sizes into effect for FiT year 10 on 1 April 2019;
  • The average time-weighted system sell price will be used to determine the value of metered export to FiT licensees.

However, the government has said it will spend more time examining the possible effect of replacing older generating equipment with newer, more efficient panels, with a more detailed consultation set to follow.

Overwhelming negative response

The government said it received 345 responses to the consultation from industry stakeholders, and a staggering 315 – equivalent to 91% – disagreed with the export tariff proposals. With a total of 14 expressing no comment or answer on that specific proposal, just 16 – around 4.6% – said they were in support of the decision.

Neil Jones, campaigner at charity 10:10 Climate Action, said it was “hard to fathom” the government’s logic.

“Solar has been a huge success story, seeing a million homes and a thousand schools taking clean energy and climate action into their own hands.

“Yet the government has bizarrely decided to prevent new homes, schools and businesses installing solar after March from being paid for the energy they export to the grid. While coal fired power stations continue to profit, households wanting to go green will be left out of pocket.

“The government now has 3 months to fix this. It must choose whether it wants to back the public’s favourite energy source – solar – or instead push it off a cliff,” he said.

No U-turn from Perry

The decision may also come as a surprise to the sector considering some of the messaging from energy and clean growth minister Claire Perry in recent weeks.

When grilled on the subject by MPs from both sides of the despatch box in late November, Perry said it would be “wrong” for solar to be exported to the grid for free.

“I do completely agree that solar power should not be provided to the grid for free and that’s why I’ll shortly be announcing the next steps for small scale renewables,” the minister said at the time.

Merry Christmas,

Rob Such

rob
07900 488 936
01344 988 775
www.rsrenewables.com

RS Renewables Ltd stores and uses personal data to be able work with you in relation to a contract we have/are working to put in place with you or the company you represent, or to investigate whether you would be interested in working with RS Renewables Ltd. Please see our i<a href="mailto:nfo