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by Liam Kirkaldy
09 July 2015
Scottish Renewables calls for greater clarity over

Scottish Renewables calls for greater clarity over "grace period" for onshore wind

A lack of clarity over the so-called “grace period” extended to firms affected by the UK Government’s decision to end the Renewable Obligation for onshore wind a year early is damaging investment, according to Scottish Renewables.

Announcing its decision last month, the Government stated there would be a “grace period” for developers which had invested significant sums of money in projects under the assurance the ROs would continue until 2017.

With the scheme now ending in 2016, Scottish Renewables has called for more information from the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC).


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Warning DECC’s decision could put £3bn of investment at risk, Jenny Hogan, director of policy at Scottish Renewables, said: “The details around exactly how a company may receive a grace period remains unclear. This lack of clarity is extremely damaging for investors, but we hope to continue our talks with officials on how this will work in practice.”

The body also raised concerns that the Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme, brought in by the last coalition Government to replace the RO, could also be included within the Conservative manifesto commitment of ending new subsidies for onshore wind.

Hogan said: “We now believe onshore wind could also be under threat within the CfD framework, which would create even longer-term uncertainty for the industry.”

Meanwhile Scottish Government energy minister Fergus Ewing described the early end to the RO for onshore wind as, “anti-business”.

He said: “The impacts could spread right across Scotland and the wider supply chain, including ports and harbours, transmission and distribution, consultancy, communities and the civil engineering sector.”

He added: “All of this is will come at great personal and economic cost to our businesses and people. I’ve heard from many successful businesses who are at the forefront of renewables technology who are now being forced to look at making redundancies as a result of these changes.

“I also heard from investors both in Scotland and abroad who are wanting to invest in this industry but these are currently being stalled because of the uncertainty this is causing.”

Scottish renewables will issue a formal response to DECC’s decision after consulting with its members.

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