Feed-in tariffs 'not job creation'

Solar panelsFeed-in tariffs were never designed to be job creation schemes, an energy minister said, as Labour renewed protests that cuts had cost jobs.

Greg Barker said the goal was to encourage the spread of microgeneration power schemes but that it had to be done on a sustainable basis.
He made the comments during Commons questions to the Department for Energy and Climate Change, after Labour's Helen Goodman said Government cuts to the subsidies had cost 100 jobs in her constituency.

Mr Barker said: "We have big ambition for micro generated and distributed energy but we can only do that if it provides real value for money both for the consumer who pays the bills and the consumer who is going to be paying for the technology.

"We can do that if we provide a long-term, stable framework. That's what we are doing.

"The feed-in tariff was never designed to be a job creation scheme in itself, it's designed to drive a mass take-up of distributed energy."

Ms Goodman, the Bishop Auckland MP, had said: "When the Government changed the rules on the feed-in tariffs, 100 jobs were lost in my constituency.

"Could you tell us what your calculation is for the number of job losses if the minister for energy's (John Hayes) view that no more onshore wind turbines be built?"
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