Government solar tariff payment cuts “illegal”

Plans by the government to cut solar feed-in tariff payments are illegal the High Court has ruled, following a legal challenge.

Government proposals that cut feed-in tariffs for any solar scheme completed after December 12 were ruled unlawful.

Environmental campaign group Friends of the Earth says it will be pressing the government to come up with new proposals permitting solar payments to fall in line with reduced installation costs.

Friends of the Earth also want more money to encourage installations paid by revenue collected by the Treasury, the removal of planning restriction and support for community-owned schemes.

Andy Atkins, executive director of Friends of the Earth, says: “These botched and illegal plans have cast a huge shadow over the solar industry, jeopardising thousands of jobs.

“We hope this ruling will prevent ministers rushing through damaging changes to clean energy subsidies – giving solar firms a much-needed confidence boost.”

He adds: “Solar payments should fall in line with falling installation costs but the speed of the government’s proposals threatened to devastate the entire industry.”

The challenge was brought by Friends of the Earth and solar firms Solarcentury and HomeSun.

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