Boost For Renewables With Next Round Of Contract For Difference Scheme

In a boost for the UK renewables supply chain, measures to promote new electricity generation projects have been launched as the Government has set out details of the next round of the Contract for Difference scheme, which will open in 2021.

This latest round will be open to renewable technologies including onshore wind and solar, with proposals to include floating offshore wind. The scheme will also be changed to facilitate the deployment of energy storage.

Local communities will have a more effective voice on developments that impact them, through proposals for tough new guidance on community engagement for developers of onshore wind across Great Britain, also announced this week. They will have a definitive say on whether projects are allowed to proceed, and it will remain the case that no English onshore wind project can proceed without the consent of the local community.

The Committee on Climate Change have said that the UK needs to quadruple renewable energy generation to reach net zero by 2050.

Commenting, Secretary of State for Business and Energy Alok Sharma said: “Ending our contribution to climate change means making the UK a world leader in renewable energy. We are determined to do that in a way that works for everyone, listening to local communities and giving them an effective voice in decisions that affect them.”

The consultation announced on Monday outlines proposals to ensure the Contracts for Difference scheme can support the increased ambition required, including:

  • making the UK a world-leader in new technologies such as floating offshore wind, which would allow wind farms to be built further away from the shore and increase clean energy capacity;
  • supporting the UK’s renewables supply chain to enhance productivity and increase competitiveness, boosting the UK’s world-class clean energy industry;
  • improving the scheme to better support energy storage, so projects can provide power when the wind stops blowing or the sun is not shining.

This is part of the Year of Climate Action, in the run up to the UK hosting the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November.