Solar subsidies were scrapped in the UK in April, and new solar installations promptly dropped from 79MW a month to 5MW last month, in a 94% fall.
Jillian Ambrose, The Guardian:
The Labor party accused the government of “actively dismantling” the UK’s solar power industry…
…showing that they don’t understand what “actively” means. If the government was active, solar panel owners would be charged for using the grid as back up, and asked to pay back the subsidy. They could use a feed-in-tariff equal to wholesale coal rates (4c KWh) to pay down their debt. Perhaps one day they’ll compensate other users for voltage surges, damaged equipment, and higher electricity bills too.
It’s not just English, Labor is also struggling to understand “supply and demand”:
Standing in for Jeremy Corbyn, Long-Bailey said solar power had the potential to cut household bills and carbon emissions while creating thousands of jobs.
Studies show every green job created caused two useful jobs to go away, or possibly even four. In Scotland the VERSO study showed for each Green Job created, 3.7 were lost. When electricity costs more, every other business in the country makes less, does less or has less money to pay workers.
“But the government, for some reason, appears to be determined to kill it off, while continuing to cheerlead for fracking,” [Long-Bailey] said.
The Solar industry was a zombie business from the get-go. How can the government kill something that never had a life of its own?
[David Lidington, the Cabinet Office minister] said: “There are 400,000 jobs already in low-carbon businesses and their supply chains throughout the UK and scope for much larger low-carbon growth to support up to 2m jobs in the future.
What’s worse than one green job — 2 million green jobs. Lidington is promising to fix the climate and create green jobs, but he should be explaining why real jobs are so much more useful than green ones.
VERSO 2011: Richard Marsh and Tom Miers, Worth the Candle? The Economic Impact of Renewable Energy Policy in Scotland and the UK(Kirkcaldy, Scotland: Verso Economics, March 2011), www.versoeconomics.com/verso-0311B.pdf (accessed March 17, 2011)