Friday, 16 July 2010
How is the "Greenest Government Ever" doing?
It is still early day for the new Government but the early signs are not good for David Cameron's claim that this would be the 'greenest government ever'. There have been several damaging cuts to what were already pretty miniscule programmes to support low carbon technologies. These have destabilised small renewable industry installers particularly with regard to biomass. With the cancellation of the Low Carbon Buildings Programme grants and uncertainty over the Renewable Heat Incentive struggling biomass installers are up against it.
There was hope by some that the Lib Dems would make the Tories green rhetoric a reality but little evidence is forthcoming yet. During the election campaign Friends of the Earth released lots of yellow balloons outiside parliament representing all the Lib Dem candidates who had signed up to their key election asks (and a few blue ones). When I asked them why they hadn't released any Green ones for all the Green Party Candidates who had signed FOEs asks (like me!) they said that they went out to buy green ones but there weren't enough. Hmmm..... with 'friends of the earth' like these who needs enemies.
Cuts to low-carbon technology programmes:
- £12.6m from The Carbon Trust's grant for low carbon technology and business support funding from DECC
- £6.1m 'efficiency savings' and under-spending on programme budgets within DECC
- £4.7m by cancelling final rounds of Bio-Energy Capital Grants Scheme and Bio-Energy Infrastructure Scheme
- £3m by reducing the scope of the Offshore Wind Capital Grants Scheme
- £3m from closing the Low Carbon Buildings Fund early
- £2.9m by reducing the scope of the government's Low Carbon Technology Programme
- £1m cut to funding for development of deep geothermal energy generation
- £700,000 by closing the Energy Saving Trust technology trials early