Chancellor - stop the solar tax hike!

| 5th December 2016
Solar roof at Moor Hall Primary School, Sutton Coldfield, completed on 1st November 2012. But with government policy changes and now a new 'solar tax' on commercial property installations including schools, there's no longer much to celebrate. Photo: Birm
Solar roof at Moor Hall Primary School, Sutton Coldfield, completed on 1st November 2012. But with government policy changes and now a new 'solar tax' on commercial property installations including schools, there's no longer much to celebrate. Photo: Birmingham News Room via Flickr (CC BY).
Next April the UK government proposes to increase taxes on self-consumed solar electricity installations on schools, offices, warehouses and factories by a whopping 6-8 times, write the STA and undersigned. This inexplicable move, which threatens a once thriving solar industry already on its knees, must be abandoned.
Businesses, schools and others with solar face a sharp 6-8 fold tax hike from next April. If this proceeds it will also restrict future investment in solar rooftops all over the UK and put the British solar industry at a disadvantage.

Dear Chancellor,

Re: Changes to business rates for self-consumes solar power

Solar is the British public's most popular source of energy and one of the cheapest ways to deliver clean power. Investment in renewables needs to treble globally to deliver on the Paris Agreement on climate change, which entered into force this month.

It is therefore disappointing that over the past year major policy changes have led to rooftop solar deployment falling by over 80% in the UK. Instead of stabilising the industry, it has been further jeopardised by surprise business rate rises for organisations that own and supply themselves with solar power.

Businesses, schools and others with solar face a sharp 6-8 fold tax hike from next April. If this proceeds it will also restrict future investment in solar rooftops all over the UK and put the British solar industry at a disadvantage, both at home and internationally.

New Ministers have described climate change as "one of the biggest - if not the biggest - threats to our national and global security". We agree. It would be extraordinary if the Government penalised businesses and communities for taking positive action.

We urge you to stop the solar tax hike.

Video: Green MP Caroline Lucas on the #SolarTaxHike

Twitter: #SolarTaxHike

Action: Make sure your MP has signed up to the Early Day Motion.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Barwell, CEO, Solar Trade Association
Paul Crewe, Head of Sustainability, Sainsbury's
Mary Creagh MP, Chair of the Environmental Audit Committee
Dan Grandage, Head of Responsible Property Investment, Aberdeen Asset Management PLC
Joan Macnaughton CB Hon FEI, Chair, The Climate Group
Alan Creedy, Energy Policy Chair, Federation of Small Businesses
Lawrence Slade, CEO, Energy UK
Jeremy Parsons, Head of Energy & Renewables, Kingfisher plc
Craig Bennett, CEO, Friends of the Earth
Ian Marchant, CEO, Dunelm Energy
Paul Massara, CEO, North Star Solar
Tracy Dunn, Headteacher, Fitzmaurice Primary School, Wiltshire
John Sauven, Executive Director, Greenpeace
Juliet Davenport, Chief Executive, Good Energy
Chris Hulatt, Founder and Head of Strategy, Octopus Investments
Sir Tim Smit KBE, Executive Vice Chairman and Co-founder of the Eden Project
James Kenny, Head of Global Affairs, Arup
Simon Cox, First Vice President Project Management and UK Sustainability
Officer, Prologis
Paul Roche, Director of Energy & Sustainability, Grafton Group PLC
Martin Harper, Conservation Director, RSPB
James Armstrong, Managing Partner, Bluefield Partners LLP
Dr Stuart Parkinson, Executive Director, Scientists for Global Responsibility
Professor Joanna D. Haigh CBE FRS, CoDirector, Grantham Institute - Climate Change & Environment, Imperial College
Caroline Lucas MP and Jonathan Bartley, Co-Leaders of the Green Party of England & Wales
Gillian Drakeford, Country Retail Manager, IKEA UK and Ireland
Gabby Mallett, Director, YouGen
Nick Emery, CEO, Fred.Olsen Ltd
Dr Jeremy Leggett, Founder of Solarcentury and SolarAid
Tony Stacey, CEO, South Yorkshire Housing Association Ltd
Tom Paul, Business Development Director, Kingspan
Martin Wright, Chairman, Renewable Energy Association
Robert Schrimpff, CEO, Solar for Schools
Philip Gready FRICS FAAV, Head of Rural, Energy, and Projects, Savills
Amy Cameron, Director, 10:10
Dale Vince OBE, Founder, Ecotricity
Baroness Featherstone, Lords Spokesperson (Energy & Climate Change), Liberal Democrats
Ramsay Dunning, Managing Director, Cooperative Energy
Syed Ahmed, Director, Energy for London
Dr Robert Gross, Director of the Centre for Energy Policy and Technology, Imperial College
Philip Wolfe MBE, Director, Community Energy England
Kevin Mouatt, CEO, Anesco Ltd
Ross Murray, President, Country Land & Business Association
Paul Reeve, Director of Business & External Affairs, Electrical Contractors' Association
Oliver Schafer, President, Solar Power Europe
Nigel Rees, Chief Executive, Glass & Glazing Federation
Dr Tony Juniper, Environmentalist and Writer
Professor Peter Lynn, University of Essex
Lisa Ashford, CEO, Ethex
Ian Draisey, Managing Director, BayWa r.e.
Brian Cooper, Town & Country Electricians Ltd.
Nicky Bull, Chair, Operation Noah
Catherine Mitchell, Professor of Energy Policy, Energy Policy Group at the University of Exeter
Mike Smyth, Chair, Energy4All
Toddington Harper, CEO, BELECTRIC UK
Emeritus Professor Keith Barnham, Imperial College
Frank Niendorf, General Manager Europe, Jinko Solar
Dr Tadhg O'Donovan, Director of Scottish Institute for Solar Energy Research, Heriot-Watt University
Professor Emeritus Susan Roaf, Heriot Watt University
Gareth Jones, Manging Director, Carbon Zero Renewables Ltd
Alistair Mumford, Corporate Energy Manager, Devon County Council
Andy O'Brien, Co-Director, Bristol Energy Cooperative
Julia Craik, Managing Director, The Premises Solar Powered Recording Studio
Tom Parkinson, Chair, Westmill Solar Coop
Andrew Simms, Co-Director, New Weather Institute and Author
Tim Rook, Technical Director, Building Engineering Services Association
Cllr Andrew Cooper, Kirklees Council
Frans van den Heuvel, CEO, Solarcentury
Sophy Fearnley-Whittingstall, Founder, SFW Communications
Sarah Ewins, Business Manager, Eleanor Palmer Primary, Camden.
Clare O'shea, Governor Hyde Primary school, Hampshire
Gary Freedman, Fair field Junior School, Hertfordshire
Karl Handy, Teacher, Holy Trinity Primary School, Essex
Adam Stanley, Deputy Head, Liss Junior School, Hampshire
Ruth Atkins, PTA, Mabe Primary School, Cornwall
Dr Kerry Mashford, Chief Executive, National Energy Foundation
Professor Franny Armstrong, film-maker and climate campaigner
Steve Cains, Head of Power Solutions, Public Power Solutions
William Notcutt, William Notcutt Estates
James Steynor, CEO, SBC Renewables
John Turner, Director, Celtic Renewable Energy Ltd
Gill Perkins, CEO, Bumblebee Conservation Trust
John Irons, Business Development Director at Ingen Energy
James Elston, Managing Director, Green Yorkshire LTD
Thijs Bauer, CEO, Colville Partners
Phil Roberts, Operations Director, GMI Energy
Ffinlo Costain, Director, Costain Consulting Ltd
Dan McCallum, Co-director, Egni PV co-op
Matthew Lumsden, Managing Director,
Connected Energy Ltd
Tony Sampson, Managing Director, Cornwall Solar Panels
George Bartley, Project Manager - Utilities, Bruntwood
Phil Powell, Director, Gwent Energy CIC
Rajiv Bhatia, Managing Director, Alternergy
Jonathan Bates, Director & General Manager, Photon Energy Ltc
Richard Beckett, Global OEM Relationship Director, Global Water Solutions
Conrad Meyer, Managing Director, Ecocetera Ltd
Paul Neary and Michael McGhee, Directors, NEO Environmental
David Clarke, Director, Corbin Industries
Dr Neil Lewis, Chairman, Carmarthenshire Energy Ltd
Luke Jeffreys, Director, Drakes Renewables
Matt Shardlow, Chief Executive, Buglife
Daniel Hughes, Director, Safe Install Ltd
Stuart Speake, CEO, Soltropy Ltd
Peter Lipman, Chair, Transition Network
Kate Gilmartin, Director, My Green Investment CIC
Esbjorn Wilmar, Chief Executive, Infinergy
Jeremy Hinton, Chief Operating Officer, New Forest Energy Ltd
Dr Mary Gillie MIET CEng, Energy Local Ltd
Howard Johns, Managing Director,
ENcome Energy Performance UK Ltd
Caroline Pomeroy, Director, Climate Stewards
Kevin Knapp, Group Managing Director, Ecolution Renewables
James Eades, Operations Director, EnergyMyWay
Sarah Butler-Sloss, Founder Director, Ashden
Herbert Eppel, Founder, HE German Technical Translations
David Hampton, Chartered Environmentalist, CEO, Carbon Coach Ltd
Stuart Qualtrough, Editor, Renewable Energy Installer Magazine
Andrew Taylor, Co-Director of Campaigns and Communications, People & Planet
Darren Edwards, Partner & Head of Sustainable Energy, Fisher German LLP
Dr Alexander Arcache, CEO, Kronos Solar
Dr Elaine Booth, CEO, Greenside Wind Energy Ltd and Bruxiehill Wind Energy Ltd
Paul Robinson, CEO, Ednie Wind Energy Ltd and Ednie Farms
Christian Breyer, Professor for Solar Economy, Lappeenrata University of Technology
Richard Priestly, Writer, Speaker, and Blogger
Lee Barrett, CEO, Energy Savings 4 You Ltd
Rob Santler, Owner & Director, The Ecosphere
Michal Galda, Managing Director, NWT Energy
Annette Thomas, Managing Director, Julian Foye
Mark Stevenson, Owner/Managing Director, Bright Spark Energy
Charles Perry, green entrepreneur and cofounder, SecondNature
Julian Patrick, CEO, Freewatt Group Ltd
Mark Poucher, Head of International Purchasing & Supply Chain, Plastico Ltd
Harry Shepherd-Cross, Director, Haymaker Energy
Ryan Green, CEO, Romag Ltd
Ben Reid, Chief Executive, Midcounties Co-operative
Andy Pegg, CEO, Segen Ltd
Lesley Rudd, Acting Chief Executive, Sustainable Energy Association
Graham Provest, Managing Director, Absolute Solar & Wind
Cleland Laidlay, Eco Hi Solar Ltd
Sonya Bedford, Partner and Head of Renewable Energy Team, Stephens Scown LLP
Michael Watson, Chairman, Pager Power Ltd
Francis Wright, Managing Director, Turquoise International Ltd
Jan Van Laethem, Regional Manager Western Europe, SMA Solar Technology
Nick Russel, Chairman, Denchi Power Ltd
Gerard Sauer, Director, Safin Resources
David Munn, Managing Director, Green Energy Solutions
Suzanne Jeffery, Chair, Campaign Against Climate Change
John Hudson, Managing Director, Boston Renewables
Adrian Williams, Owner, Solar Technology International
Bruce Cross, Founder & Managing Director, GB-Sol Ltd
David Robson, Managing Director, InstaGroup Ltd
Shanza Ali, Chair, Muslim Climate Action
Merlin Hyman, Chief Executive, Regen SW
Gabriel Wondrausch, Managing Director, SunGift Energy
Jacob Rix, Policy Officer, UK Youth Climate Coalition
David Elbourne, CEO, Solarplicity
Hugh Ellis, Interim CEO, Town & Country Planning Association
Paul Bodenham, Chair, Green Christian
Marc Stears, Executive Director, New Economics Foundation
Ruth Busbridge, Director, Ledbury
Community Solar Co-op
Chris Church, Chair, Climate Action England
Vimal Ruia, Managing Director, Drew Brady & Co Ltd
Peter Haigh, Managing Director, Bristol Energy Ltd.
Stefano Gambro, Managing Director, Ennoviga Solar Ltd.

Businesses, schools and others with solar face a sharp 6-8 fold tax hike from next April. If this proceeds it will also restrict future investment in solar rooftops all over the UK and put the British solar industry at a disadvantage.

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