Lib Dems call for incentives on microrenewable installations

The government must put measures in place to encourage people to install micro-renewables following cuts in household grants, the Liberal Democrats have urged.

Cardiff Central MP Jenny Willott maintained that grants towards installing microrenewables under the government's low carbon buildings programme have declined by almost 60 per cent since April.

The government outlined cuts to the programme when it was relaunched earlier this year, which saw the maximum household grant drop from £15,000 to £2,500, (Planning, 11 May, p1).

Willott said more expensive and powerful types of system have been especially affected, including wind turbines and solar technology.

"Ministers claim that by 2050, 40 per cent of the UK's electricity needs can be met by microrenewables. But they are failing to back this up," she contended. She added that microrenewables are too expensive for most people to install.

But a Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform spokesman said: "Since the relaunch in May less money has been spent than in the same period the previous year. Applications remain steady though." The programme, which is due to run until March 2009, will remain under review.

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