Friends of the Earth slams Government

Friends of the Earth has hit out at the Government for refusing to increase consumer grants for installing renewable energy products and has described its low-carbon building scheme as an “unmitigated disaster”.

The Government announced an overhaul of its Low Carbon Buildings Programme today (March 31), which increases funding for the public sector to 50% but does not allocate any new cash to encourage consumers install renewable products such as wind turbines.

The charity says consumer grants should also be raised from a nominal level to 50% and feed-in tariffs – which guarantee energy so consumers can sell back to the grid – should be introduced.

Ed Matthews, Friends of the Earth’s Low Carbon Homes campaigner, says: “The potential for tacking climate change in the housing sector is enormous. But the Government’s response continues to be woeful. The Low Carbon Buildings Programme has been an unmitigated disaster.”

The charity says that over the last year, the grants programme has actually created a drop in the rate of renewable energy installations.

Matthew adds: “You would be forgiven for thinking that the Government was actually trying to destroy the small-scale renewables industry in the UK.”

The charity says the Low Carbon Buildings Programme should be “ten times bigger” and the Energy Bill, which went through on March 11, should be amended so that householders that generates their own electricity can sell back to the grid.

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