New support levels for solar and biomass

The Government has set out support levels designed to encourage new solar and biomass power generation developments. Under the new package, ground-mounted solar installations with more than 5MW of capacity […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

The Government has set out support levels designed to encourage new solar and biomass power generation developments.

Under the new package, ground-mounted solar installations with more than 5MW of capacity will receive 1.6 Renewables Obligation Certificates (ROCs) per megawatt hour from April next year and building-mounted systems will get 1.7 ROCs/MWh.

The new support levels are higher than the 1.5 ROCs/MWh initially proposed by DECC but less than the 1.8 ROCs/MWh the solar industry said was necessary to keep new projects in operation.

Energy Minister Greg Barker said: “We have listened to industry about the need to differentiate support between building mounted and ground mounted installations and we have introduced two bands as a result. Our proposals for solar projects on commercial buildings will encourage businesses to consider solar PV as a serious option for meeting their power needs.”

Under the support mechanism for biomass, new biomass plants up to 400MW will receive 1.5 ROCs/MWh, which will fall to 1.4 ROCs/MWh after March 31 in 2016. DECC said this could unlock investment worth £600 million and create around 1,000 construction jobs.

Energy Secretary Ed Davey said: “Biomass will make a significant contribution as we seek to increase the amount of cost-effective, low carbon renewable power in our energy mix. The support we are setting out today will bring new investment into the economy and create new jobs.”