Energy Secretary offers to meet Brighton MP after question about wind farm subsidy cuts

Posted On 23 Jun 2015 at 6:29 pm

The Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd has offered to meet Brighton Pavilion MP Caroline Lucas.

She made the offer after the Green MP asked about wind farm subsidy cuts in the House of Commons yesterday afternoon (Monday 22 June).

Caroline Lucas intervened as the Energy Secretary made a statement to the Commons about cuts in subsidies for onshore wind turbines.

Ms Lucas said: “The IMF recently reported that Britain subsidises its fossil fuel industry to the tune of more than £1,000 per household whereas onshore wind is just £10 a household.

Council repairs
Caroline Lucas

Caroline Lucas

“If the Secretary of State is serious about affordability and climate change, why is she not tackling fossil fuel subsidies, instead of slashing wind – one of the most popular and affordable of the energy sources?”

Amber Rudd said: “I urge the honourable lady to take a look at that report. I also saw those statements and found them so extraordinary that I asked for a copy of the IMF report.

“I would be happy to have a discussion with her about it.

“It is not a direct subsidy in the way that we understand it although it is an important point.

“It is right to reduce fossil fuel, especially in its dirtiest form, but the real danger is health and environmental impact and that is why we need to get rid of the subsidies.”

There were fears after the Energy Secretary’s statement that about 250 onshore wind projects, which are already in development, could be cancelled. This would affect about 2,500 turbines.

Ms Rudd said that she was trying to balance the government’s renewable energy commitments with a desire to keep consumers’ energy bills affordable.

She said that offshore wind farms – such as the proposed Rampion wind farm off the coast of Brighton and Hove – would be unaffected by the changes.

Critics said that wind energy was the best way of ensuring that Britain can keep the lights on and bills down.

And they pointed out that similar uncertainty in the market was created when the government announced a cut in the support for solar power in 2011.

Although it was acknowledged that there is still support for people installing solar panels.

  1. HJarrs Reply

    So, not only are we screwing up the environment for our children, grandchildren and countless future generations, but we are subsidising damaging fossil fuels to the hilt in order to do so!

  2. Gerald Wiley Reply

    So what is wrong with just having off-shore wind farms?

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