Government loses its solar panel appeal

THE SOLAR power industry has received a boost in the courts, after judges upheld a decision blocking the government’s attempts to cut solar subsidies.

The Court of Appeal case involved the government’s move to halve the payments made to households with solar panels. Under the programme the households are paid for the electricity they generate.

The government – which says it cannot afford to sustain the scheme – has indicated that it will now take the case to the Supreme Court.

Climate change secretary Chris Huhne said after yesterday’s high court decision, which upheld the view that the government’s plans were legally flawed: “We want to maximize the number of installations that are possible within the available budget rather than use available money to pay a higher tariff to half the number of installations.”

Employers’ group the CBI urged the government to abandon its legal battle over its plans.

“The judgement should be used to draw a line under this saga, which saw the government scoring a spectacular own goal and confidence in the renewables sector undermined,” said director general John Cridland.