The Renewable Energy Association (REA) has set out the true cost of supporting renewables ahead of a key opposition day debate over the escalation of energy bills.
The REA notes that over the last two years, the average dual-fuel energy bill has climbed by over £200. Analysis undertaken by the REA based on figures published by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and Ofgem, shows that support schemes for renewables over a similar period accounted for just £4 (1.95%) of the total £205 energy bill rise.
The association argues that the recently announced round of price increases will further reduce the proportion of green levies on energy bills. The REA calculates that renewable support schemes will cost the average household £22 this year.
The Commons debate scheduled for today will centre on the proposed electricity market reforms and whether more could be done to promote competition in the energy sector, traditionally dominated by the ‘Big Six’ companies.
REA Chief Executive Gaynor Hartnell explained why renewables should be viewed as a solution to rising energy bills, stating: “Renewables make it possible for people and communities to supply themselves with heat or power. This introduces a whole new level of choice and competition into the energy markets. We'd like to see politicians from all parties fully grasp that potential. Support for renewables can drive a much more diverse and competitive market, not just green energy.”
According to Quarterly Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES), that would mean that the cost to the average consumer of supporting solar would be around £4 this year (if deployment rate of all renewables stayed the same). Following yet another poll which crowned solar as the most popular energy generation technology amongst Brits, the minimal cost of supporting solar for the British public should be publicised, the REA said.
Hartnell added: “The role of renewables in increasing energy bills is often greatly exaggerated. The figures show it's our reliance on fossil fuels that is costing us dear. Not only is it more affordable than people think to go renewable, but the public understands that our future national security and prosperity depend on it.”