Plans to bring in ‘feed in tariffs’ which will reward households which actually contribute electricity to the National Grid are to be welcomed. This new development, is a step in the right direction, and should enable community based and community owned schemes to get off the ground developing green sustainable energy from a combination of wind, water and solar power.
The long called for 'Feed-in tariffs' will pay households and Communities which generate surplus electricity to the National Grid from April 2010. At the moment only those with smart meters or larger commercially driven companies can generate revenue from energy supply. Some 19 European Countries already operate "clean energy cash back" schemes.
Presently, in Germany, villages and towns have bought wind turbines, built biomass plants and installed solar panels on private houses. Households who participate are paid a guaranteed fixed price for every kilowatt hour of energy they produce - a higher sum than for electricity made from fossil fuels in traditional power stations.
In Germany, since "feed-in tariffs" were introduced in Germany, some 400,000 homes, particularly in the south, have installed solar panels. Three wind turbines can make £15,000 a year for a single village. Only about 2% of Britain's energy comes from renewable sources at the moment, but the UK Government is now playing a belated game of catch up as it has pledged to increase that to 15% before 2020.
A step in the right direction as well as a case of better late than never…