REA hits back at Cameron pledge to review green taxes

The Renewable Energy Association seeks clarification from David Cameron following the prime minister’s announcement that he will ‘review’ green taxes levied on energy bills.

Mr Cameron has promised to look into the proportion of consumer’s electricity and heating bills currently allocated to funding renewable technology and energy efficiency in an attempt to cut the cost of energy. The government has come under increasing pressure to act after three of the ‘big six’ energy providers announced price rises of between 8-10 percent.

The REA has urged the government not to reduce levels of investment in green energy which is required to reduce the country’s dependence on fossil fuels and meet carbon reduction targets. Almost 50 percent of consumer fuel bills are directly related to the volatile wholesale costs of fossil fuels.

REA chief executive Dr Nina Skorupska said: “David Cameron must clarify which levies he is looking to roll back and how, or risk severely undermining investor confidence at a time when this country desperately needs investment in new low carbon capacity. Renewables are the only low carbon options on the table to bridge the near term capacity crunch, which will bite well before new nuclear or shale gas come on-stream.

“Renewables policy makes up only 3 percent of average bills overall and less than a third of the government’s ‘green levies’, so politicians and the media are simply wrong to say that green energy is to blame for pushing up bills. It is the ever-increasing cost of gas which has been the main cause of rising bills in recent months and years. With more energy-efficient homes and more home-grown renewables we become less exposed to these volatile gas markets.

“In return for investing in renewables now, we create skilled green jobs in innovative new industries, bringing areas of previous industrial decline back to life. In the long-term we will also get lower, more stable energy prices and preserve a climate which is safe for our families in the future.”