Caroline Lucas urges UK to vote against EU solar duties

Proposed EU solar duties from china are having the impact of increasing the cost of solar for the first time in several years.  Running counter to the FIT system that decreases on the assumption of declining input costs as the global industry continues to grow.  The proposal is rather mixed up as within the EU manufacture of panels is only a tiny percentage of the overall industry and a rise in costs would have a negative impact on 100'000's of consumers who now see the ''light'' on the benefits of solar.

The Brighton and Hove MP and ex-Green Party leader - Caroline Lucas has called on the UK government to guarantee that it will vote against the imposition of any duties on Chinese solar imports.

“From what I've heard first hand from small solar firms in my constituency, the last thing that the UK solar PV sector needs right now is the uncertainty being caused by the EU anti-dumping anti-subsidy investigations.

“The outcome of this investigation is not yet clear but the uncertainty is already making ripples in our green industry''

The European Commission is set to present its preliminary proposals to the Council in early June, before members vote on the proposals. If a majority of members vote against the proposals then they will be dismissed.

Speaking at the Large Scale Solar Conference yesterday, the minster for energy and climate change, Greg Barker, sought to ease industry concern’s saying: “I want to assure you that the coalition is working hard to make the commission aware of the wider impacts of the EU/China case.”

Lucas concluded: “If the Government is serious about its ambition of 22GW of solar power by 2020, Ministers need to do all they can to oppose the EU anti dumping measures – and to support firm and ambitious targets for the renewable energy sector more broadly.