GLD Energy and Democracy Emergency Motion accepted for ballot
GLD Chair Simon Oliver and Vice Chair Political Steve Bolter are proud to announce that our emergency motion to urge the Tories to
Fast Track Renewables Not Fracking
has been accepted as an emergency motion for the Bournemouth 2015 Federal Conference.
The motion is in reaction to the announcement of Tory plans to undermine onshore wind and small scale renewables investment and bias planning towards shale gas extraction (using fracking, probably).
Note that we are also preparing a Keep It In The Ground motion for Spring, for which this members petition is being circulated.
The three things this motion calls for the government to do are:
- Respect local decisions on both renewable energy and fracking, and significantly reduce the frequency with which they are overridden after being called in to be reviewed centrally.
- Maintain the practice of permitting small scale renewable energy schemes to pre-register for government support.
- Provide people with access to independent expert advice on finding finance and gaining planning permission for domestic and community renewable energy schemes.
On August 13th, the Tory government announced new planning guidance that strongly encourages local authorities to meet the existing 16 weeks deadline to approve or reject planning applications, after which ministers can intervene on a decision. Fast track for shale gas drilling planning applications.
This contrasts starkly with their June announcement to require a high level of public approval for any onshore wind planning application.
The fast track changes are designed to rush the local decisions in Ryedale, Yorkshire, which are being opposed by local Liberal Democrat councillors.
The recent decision in Lancashire to reject planning applications for fracking is now going through an appeals process and the government are now able to use this planning guidance to justify calling in any decision against fracking here too.
On July 22nd DECC announced a consultation (now over) on withdrawing pre-registration of small scale renewable schemes for feed-in tariffs, which would make any scheme with shallow pockets a higher risk for investors. On the same day they launched a consultation on lowering support for Solar PV under 5MW.
Further to this, they announced on August 27th a consultation on drastically reducing the Feed-in Tariff scheme which has the capability of significantly undermining the growth of the green economy.
Solar PV generation in the UK has gone from virtually nothing in 2010 to 1.29% of total electricity generation in 2014. Because they can be owned and run by homeowners and small community schemes, they are rapidly democratising the energy market. They will not reach wholesale price parity for another decade, and are a couple of years away from retail price parity, so need continued government support.