The Greens’ Shane Rattenbury is saying a few words over the body of the solar industry after Simon Corbell’s dramatic decision over night to close the feed-in tariff scheme:
“The failure has been the artificial brick wall created by the Government, and supported by the Liberal party, by capping the small scale solar scheme at 15 megawatts. This overnight announcement will have a significant impact on the local industry.”
“The Greens opposed the cap back in March this year, warning that the solar sector would come to a standstill overnight and those working in household solar sector would be most heavily affected.
“What the Government should have done was gradually wind down the feed-in tariff premium, so as to reduce the incentive over a longer period of time and ensure a more sustained industry in the ACT.”
“The cap has only been in place for three months, and already we have reached it. When the government set the cap in February this year, they predicted it would take at least 18 months.
“This is entirely unsatisfactory for business planning. How are business operators supposed to plan with such a stop-start approach from government?
“There is a lesson here for the government about how to give better signals to business – if we want to build a solar capital here in the ACT we need to treat new businesses with some respect and consistency, or else they won’t trust the investment environment in which they are operating,” Mr Rattenbury said.