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EDM adds weight to campaign for equal rates for microgeneration pioneers

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 12 March 2010 at 9:29 am

Sixty seven MPs have signed early day motion 953 calling for equal clean energy cashback (feed-in tariff) for pioneer microgenerators. You can check whether your MP is one of them on the parliament website. If not, why not ask them to sign it. The easiest way to do this is at Write to Them.

The motion: "calls on the Government to recognise the innovation and dynamism of those people who, in breaking new ground in this area, have helped it deliver the Clean Energy Cash-Back scheme; and further calls on the Government to reward those people at the same level as those installing micro-generation capacity for the first time after 1 April 2010."

Campaigning microgenerator Paul Truelove says: "I call on you to talk to your MP and ask for their support and their signature". The petition that he set up on the No 10 website currently has 1,911 signatories. Mr Truelove adds: "Can I urge you to get family, friends, friends of friends and colleagues to sign up to the e-petition.  We all need to be as proactive as possible and it can make a real difference."

For previous blog posts on this subject, see:
Conservatives support fair treatment for all microgenerators; Feed-in tariff scheme is shortsighted;


If you have a question about anything in the above blog, please ask it in the comments section below.

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5 comments - read them below or add one

Monica B

Monica BComment left on: 18 March 2010 at 8:03 pm

I'm in the same position, - I installed a water source heat pump for which I would have received about £1300 per year for 20 years, I did receive £4000 in a lump sum, but that was well under 1/3 the cost of the system. I feel strongly that the present proposals for not paying early installers of renewable heating will lead to some bizarre situations. It will make economic sense for nearly all early installers to remove their RH system if that's possible, and re-install later. It will certainly be so for any self-installers. Also, if I now install solar thermal, I will not be eligible for a grant even for that, as I no longer use a non-renewable heat source, If I sell the house, the value of the house will be higher if I take the system out first, as new technology is so disliked by the general public. However, if I am receiving the RHI then the value would probably go up, so I am hit yet again as an early installer. I feel we should try and highlight these anomalies now in responses to the Consultation document.

Finally I think there is an economic argument for paying early installers. The Government is keen that the RHI takes off quickly. However, in talking to neighbours and friends, I am aware how much opposition or just apathy there is to green technologies. One of the major ways to change this will be the payment of hard cash, but to convince people it is real money needs a significant number of people receiving the money. To include the early installers in the RHI would at a stroke provide a body of people able to say they were receiving the payments, and would be a big impetus to the scheme taking off. It would also mean that those most motivated at spreading the message of green technologies were "on board" instead of pissed off!

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Cathy Debenham

Cathy DebenhamComment left on: 18 March 2010 at 3:21 pm

Hi Jon

I was at a consultation event on the RHI on Tuesday, and the plight of existing microgenerators came up. This is what I wrote about it in yesterday's blog:

'Several installers pointed to the iniquity of ommitting existing microgenerators from the scheme, saying that they had received enquiries from people wanting to rip out existing equipment and replace it so as to get the renewable heat incentive. "Why are we penalising the people who lead the way?" asked Kim Slowe. Asked about this Erich Scherer pointed out that for DECC it was a "no win situation - we have to make one or other side of the argument angry". However, he did ask people to respond to the consultation on this issue: "Now this is only a proposal. We have a fairly open question on this. We need more than anecdotal evidence".'

To add to that extract, he also said: "the taxpayer has to bear the costs and there are rules and principles as to how government spends money. Value for money in this case means spending money on something that doesn't exist yet."

Essentially I see the difficulty: they are dammed if they do, and dammed if they don't. And the general mass of taxpayers is a much heavier lobby than a few early adopters.

Speaking personally, although it grates a bit (alright a lot) that I got a grant of £400 for my solar thermal, and new installations will get £400 a year for 20 years, I'm not going to launch a YouGen campaign on this one. I think it differs from feed-in tariff, in that we've all been expecting that for some time, and many people installed pre-July 2009 expecting to get it - maybe having been (nearly) told they would by their installer. The RHI, however, was not expected, and is truly innovative - the UK leading the way for once (although we've got a lot of catching up to do). So while we're happy to put people who are campaigning in touch with each other, and will flag it up in our response, we won't be taking the lead as we did with the feed-in campaign.

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Jon Perry

Jon PerryComment left on: 15 March 2010 at 3:21 pm

Thanks Paul Had a look at DECC consultation document. Their rationale for the July cut off is that the money is intended to encourage 'new take-up'. From their perspective I suppose there is nothing to be gained by rewarding early adopters. What can you say? I guess there's nothing to stop me removing my system and replacing it using one of the 'recognised' installers. Total waste of time and resources but would save money in the long run!

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technicaComment left on: 13 March 2010 at 6:17 am

Hi Jon

To answer your question, unfortunately no, this petition is for microgeneration of electricity.  You are quite correct in saying when the heat tariff comes into play in April 2011 your system will not be eligible.  There are thousands of people in your position. 


There is a consultation document on the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) website.  It informs you of the procedure to file your comments; this is the first stage of the complaint procedure.  Get as many supporters to complain about the proposed commissioning date of 15 July 2009 (systems fitted before this date will not be eligible) as you can.


Unfortunately, we complained at the proposal stage of the Feed in Tariff for electricity and it fell on deaf ears, hence the EDM and the e petition at 10 Downing Street. If you need any help in setting up a website and a campaign contact me through the contact page at:






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Jon Perry

Jon PerryComment left on: 12 March 2010 at 8:43 pm

David Heath, my local MP has not yet signed the EDM. I will write to him to see where he stands. I had a solar thermal system installed in November 2008 and it appears that this means I will not be eligible for the clean energy cashback when the scheme for solar thermal systems starts. Does the petition cover my situation as well?  

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