In addition to commenting on financial incentives required to boost the industry, Barker also stressed the importance of tackling non-financial barriers to uptake and provided an update on forthcoming initiatives.
He said: “I want to make it clear the coalition government is committed to green growth and has high ambitions.
“We have seen significant growth on the back on the Feed-in Tariffs. Under our new improved scheme, we expect to get an additional 3.6GW of capacity by 2015, costing just £0.5bn more. That’s three times as much electricity generation for less than one third of the cost.
“I am also delighted to announce that we are on track to meet the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) delivery timetable and will be shortly publishing our longer term proposals for budget management as well as proposals on biomass sustainability and air quality.
“We’re on track to have the Green Deal framework in place by October allowing the market to come into being. We are continuing to work with delivery partners to start the Green Deal with an early period of focussed testing ahead of Green Deal plans being available to consumers from January.”
He added: “Let’s make no mistake. Tackling the non-financial barriers is important to the sustainability of the sector. Concentrating alone of the financial side, without building an industry and supply chain that is focused on quality with people having the right skills, will not do.”
In response to the speech, The Micropower Council’s chief executive, Dave Snowden, said: “Microgeneration has a vital strategic role in both heating and electricity. This industry is ready to play its part, to support the government’s amibitions and to engage consumers in the future of an energy generating democracy.
“The industry’s role in this partnership (with government) will be to deliver cost-effective products, reliable installations, carbon reductions and credibility with consumers as well as a range of wider benefits to the energy system and society. We see the government’s role in this partnership being to implement the concrete policy measures to support the shared vision.”