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Comment - Energy and Climate Change

Evasion on Solar PV by David Flint.

Background: Last year the government cut the feed-in tariff (FIT) for solar PV without completing the consultation period. The Court of Appeal held this to be wrong in law. The government appealed to the Supreme Court. It said it had made the appeal because delay would have cost energy consumers £1.5 billion.

This episode: In February Caroline Lucas asked the government to state the assumptions used to create that figure. She got a reply from Gregory Barker on February 20th.

I wrote immediately to Barker challenging his figures and pointing out that since the FIT is both raised from and paid to consumers it cannot be a NET cost to consumers. In replying the Department for Energy and Climate Change addressed the detail inadequately but ignored the second point.

A further challenge by me under the Freedom of Information Act (the date was now April 13th) produced the reply that they would have to "extend the time limit for responding by 10 days because of the complexity of the request". So, a calculation that was sufficiently solid to justify a ministerial reply to Caroline in February was not fit to show me in May.

Why am I not surprised?

Watch this space for more.

First published in the EGP members newsletter, June 2012

Published and promoted by Bill Linton for Enfield Green Party, both at 39A Fox Lane, London N13 4AJ