How to remove the ‘environment’ from the new government-backed government-funded energy plan
A group of environmental activists have released a new proposal to amend the government-sponsored Renewable Energy Regulator (RE) bill.
The new plan, which was released on Thursday, would make the Regulator responsible for determining if the proposed renewable energy scheme is in the public interest and how it would benefit the economy and environment.
It is a proposal which would also require the Regulators to consult with stakeholders and ensure that renewable energy is not used in a way that could damage the environment.
“This new proposal is the most important step in reversing the damage caused by the Government’s misguided plan to put up renewable energy infrastructure in the UK.
We are asking for a full consultation to ensure that it is not the Registers decision,” said Alistair Gray, Director of the Sierra Club UK.
“Renewable energy should be a priority for all the UK Government, not just one.
We need a national policy that puts our energy and climate security first.”
The new proposal comes after the government announced last month that it was seeking to change the Regulated Renewables (RegR) scheme to create a government-owned and managed renewable energy company.
This would mean that the RegR would be able to make policy decisions and issue licences for renewable energy.
In February, the Government announced plans to abolish the RegrR scheme entirely.
However, the Renewable Economy Act 2016, passed by Parliament on March 8, 2017, makes it mandatory for the RegRs Renewable Technology Assessment (RTA) and Renewable Emissions Trading Scheme (RETS) to be reviewed.
In the new proposal, the Regs Renewable Technologies Assessment (RETA) would be replaced by a ‘Regulation Authority’ which would decide on whether renewable energy should continue to be considered in the RegT schemes.
Under the new plan the RegTs Renewable Trading Scheme and RegT scheme would both be managed by the Regulations Authority.
The Regulator’s role would be to ensure there are no conflicts of interest between renewable energy projects, as well as the RegTS Renewable Development Scheme.
The RETS would be managed and operated by the Regulatory Authority, which would have the power to approve or reject Renewable Renewable Investment Certificates (RRCIs) and/or Renewable Electricity Market Regulations (REMs).
The Government has also announced plans for a ‘National Renewable Charge’ (NRCC) scheme which would be administered by the NRCC, the organisation that administers the Regulatory Charges Scheme.
This scheme would be designed to encourage renewable energy, but also has the potential to be used to subsidise the cost of solar and wind farms.
The Government says the scheme will have a range of benefits, but has not said how it will work.
“The Regulators Authority will be responsible for allocating the RRCIs and REMs between the Regryt and the Regt schemes,” said a Government spokesperson.
“The RegT will be managed entirely by the REGT scheme and will have no direct influence on the Regrayr scheme, and will therefore be able take a different approach.”
“As part of the process of reforming the Registries Renewable scheme, the regulatory authority will be required to consult the wider public, including businesses, to establish what role the Regriers Renewable Trade Scheme will play in the future of the renewable energy sector in the United Kingdom.”
The Government’s plan to replace the RegRN scheme is likely to be welcomed by businesses and environmental groups, who have been calling for changes to the Regrants scheme since its inception in 2020.
“We welcome the Government today’s announcement that it will remove the RegRen scheme as the regulatory mechanism for the RTA scheme, replacing it with the RegTR,” said Steve Trench, CEO of Green Economy UK.
“[This] is a significant step in making the Renewables Regulator a more accountable and transparent organisation.
It also recognises the value of the existing Renewables Scheme, which we have championed since the scheme’s inception.
This will allow us to get the most out of the scheme and its considerable investment in the economy.”
The RegRN system is being run by the Renewance Industry Group, a non-profit organisation that represents the energy sector.
However, some environmental groups have questioned whether the Reg RN scheme is actually being run properly.
The Government is seeking public input on the new RegRN proposal.
The government is currently undertaking an extensive review of its Renewable Markets regime to ensure it works as intended, while ensuring that it retains the flexibility and independence to provide for the best outcomes for the UK.”