Solar and wind will match gas on cost by 2020, finds UK government body

Solar and wind will match gas on cost by 2020, finds UK government body

The Committee on Climate Change reports that low carbon energy sources will be as affordable in the U.K. as gas by 2020, provided gas pays its fair share through a carbon price.

The gathering arguments undermining the Conservative’s proposal to strip away subsidies for solar support grew more convincing today, with evidence emerging from the government’s own Committee on Climate Change suggesting that solar and wind power will be as cheap as gas as early as 2020.

The chief executive of the Committee, Matthew Bell, has said that the expectation that large-scale solar farms and onshore wind will reach cost-parity with gas is predicated on gas continuing to pay its fair share through a carbon price, and investors continuing to put money into all low carbon sectors – with the government giving the correct policy signals in order to convince them to do so.

Those policy signals have wavered alarmingly in the past few months, with yesterday’s Hinkley Point C deal further proof that the current government holds little love for renewables, even admitting in its official text that it will back subsidies for nuclear power.

“The government confirms that it is not continuing the ‘no public subsidy policy’ of the previous administration,” ran the footnote in relation to nuclear power. There are no such qualms with clean energy, however, with energy minister Andrea Leadsom recently stating: “It is vital that industries over time stand on their own two feet. I don’t think anyone would advocate an industry that only survives because of a subsidy paid by a billpayer.”

 

Source: Pv-Magazine

Date: October 2015

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