Kent Green Party has reacted with anger to news that firms supplying renewable energy services are being forced to lay off staff because of a series of problems with the government grant scheme that helps households green technologies, such as solar panels. Currently, the system(1) has been suspended while the Government considers what to do.
Steve Dawe comments:
“New buildings and new homes in Kent should be able to access Government grants for energy conservation and renewable energy technologies. But the Government’s failure to fund its grants schemes properly is causing delays which let down consumers and the safe energy industry."
“This failure is coupled with rising greenhouse gas emissions in recent years. The Government also refuses to include aviation and marine emissions in the UK’s total greenhouse gas emissions (2). Voting Labour in current elections would be to reward comprehensive failures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the Government. Labour equals ‘climate failure’ and should be rejected at the polls.”
1. The Low Carbon Buildings Program is the government grant scheme that provides funding to householders wanting to install renewable technologies. The grant scheme was suspended in March pending review. In the last two months before the suspension the grant funding ran out within a day of being released. This means that the 50% increase that the Chancellor made to the £12m fund in his latest budget has not been made available to homeowners. As Chair of the London Assembly’s Environment Committee, Darren Johnson, a Green Party member of the London Assembly, oversaw the production of a report investigating the availability of domestic renewable energy systems. Power to the People is available at http://www.london.gov.uk/assembly/reports/environment/power_to_the_people.pdf
2. The Government has committed itself to the Kyoto protocol which means it is meant to reduce emissions against agreed targets. However, the Kyoto arrangements do not include aviation, marine or defence-related emissions, making achievement of goals exceptionally difficult since aviation is the fastest growing source of greenhouse gas emissions: about 6% extra per year in Europe.