U.K. to Detail Offshore Wind Subsidies in Spring Budget 2017

The U.K. Treasury will try to bolster investor confidence by setting out plans for how it will fund a new wave of offshore wind and other low-carbon power projects in the 2020s.

The government is currently considering the future of the Levy Control Framework, which supports low-carbon power projects through consumer electricity bills, said David Gauke, chief secretary to the Treasury, in an answer to a written question submitted by Green Party lawmaker Caroline Lucas.

It will set out the findings in the Spring Budget 2017, which is due to be released March, he said.

“The government urgently needs to give clarity to businesses and investors on the future of funding for renewable energy in this country,” Lucas said in an e-mailed statement. “We need to see the scaling-up of support for renewables over the coming years if we are to meet our national and international commitments to tackling climate change.”

Renewable energy companies, such as Siemens AG and Dong Energy A/S want certainty over the future of the LCF in order to plan future projects. The government has promised 730 million pounds ($906 million) for offshore wind and other less-advanced renewable energy technologies during the current 5-year parliamentary term, set to end in fiscal 2021.

“This is a first, essential step towards certainty for investors and businesses in uncertain times,” RenewableUK Executive Director Emma Pinchbeck said in an e-mailed statement.

The second of three auctions during this parliament is due to start in April and offshore wind developers may seek support for as much as 10 gigawatts of new capacity, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

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