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  • 24 Jun 2011
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Government Microgeneration Strategy launched this week

Greg Barker

Measures to protect consumers against shoddy installation of renewable kit, like domestic PV panels and biomass installations, were outlined in DECC's Microgeneration Strategy, announced this week, which included the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) to protect the consumer against cowboy builders and poor works.

The strategy applies to all renewable energy installations generating less than 50kW for electricity and less than 300kW for heat, and is restricted to England only. Its publication is prior to the £860M Renewable Heat Incentive being implemented and the amended Feed-In tariffs, which were announced this week and which will kick-in on August 1st this year.

Launching the strategy this week at the Microgeneration UK conference in central London, Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said 'The strategy sets out ways in which the MCS can be made more effective. This will include simpler processes and, where possible, better alignment with other existing certification schemes and testing requirements at the European and International level'. He underlined the fact that any changes being made to it will 'not affect the MCS continuing to provide robust consumer protection.'

Liz Male, chair of trades standards watchdog 'Trustmark' sees the strategy as part of the government's wish to push the Green Deal forward, but is worried about a lack of co-ordination. 'We've got one set of standards for solar energy, another for the Green Deal and another for general building works- all while the government is dismantling the consumer protection landscape and just when we're trying to get into 23 million homes' she said. 'Government and consumer organisations need to get round the table and bring the standards together to protect both the industry and the public'.

A copy of the report can be found at the following link:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/meeting_energy/microgen/strategy/strategy.aspx

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