Lib Dems Dismiss Tory Threat to Cut Renewable Energy Subsidies
From The Guardian
By Damian Carrington
The Liberal Democrats have dismissed a Conservative threat to cut renewable energy subsidies in order to reduce consumer bills as a “total red herring” while energy companies have warned that a political row over green policies will itself lead to higher prices.
Following the headline-grabbing pledge by Ed Miliband that a Labour government would freeze energy prices for 20 months Tory ministers queued up to attack green subsidies at their conference in Manchester last week with some saying that the levies should be cut in order to reduce bills.
But a senior Lib Dem source told the Guardian such a cut was not legally possible because contracts with energy companies are already in place: “This side of the election, the deals are already done: you’d need to be knocking on the doors of windfarms and saying the deal you had is off.”
The Lib Dem source added that just 3% of current bills – £37 a year – was spent on supporting wind, solar and other green power. “Half of the bill is wholesale energy costs and they are only going in one direction – up – as they have in the last year or two. Any 3% cut could be wiped out in the next six months.”
Senior industry figures warn that political bickering over support for green energy will only add to investor uncertainty and so push up bills for everyone.
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