Households that generate green energy through wind, solar or water power will be rewarded in a new government scheme that will pay homes to contribute green electricity to the National Grid.
Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband told the BBC1 Politics Show that the ‘feed-in tariffs’, rewarding households and community groups that sell back excess electricity, would be available from next April.
Mr Miliband said: ‘The crucial thing about feed-in tariffs is that they do speak to people’s wish to do their bit and to see benefits flowing back to their community from renewable energy generation.
‘We can harness people’s enthusiasm for getting involved, doing their bit, to help create the clean energy of the future.’
Clean energy communities
Similar clean energy cashback schemes are already in operation in 19 EU countries including Germany, where small communities of local people have grouped together to buy wind turbines, solar panels and biomass plants.
They are paid a fixed price for each kilowatt hour of energy the microgeneration scheme produces. According to the BBC, three wind turbines can make £15,000 a year for a single village.
The Sunday Mirror reported yesterday that plans due to be unveiled in the government’s renewable energy strategy would add an extra £230 a year to the average household fuel bill.
Mr Miliband rejected that figure – but admitted that households will face rising fuel bills as Britain shifts to a low-carbon strategy.
The renewable energy strategy, which will be published on Wednesday is a ‘route map’ setting out the changes that the government need to make to achieve legally binding targets of reducing carbon emissions by 34% by 2020 and by 80% by 2050.
He said that there were three elements to the strategy – renewables such as wind and solar power, nuclear power and clean fossil fuel energy through carbon capture and storage.
Visit Which?’s greener living section for more on green and environmental issues.
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