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DECC confirms renewable energy funding

The Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has announced that more than £200m in funding will be made available for renewable energy projects from October, but energy from waste schemes will not have access to as much funding as other methods.

The money is being made available after the European Commission confirmed that the Contracts for Difference and Capacity Market schemes in the UK are in line with rules for state aid.

Contracts for Difference will provide funding for renewable energy projects split into three categories: established technology like onshore wind and solar, less established methods such as offshore wind and lastly biomass conversions.

Energy-from-waste (EfW) with CHP is classed as an established technology while anaerobic digestion and biomass with CHP fall into the less-established category.

Projects will compete for money allocated to each of the three categories, with the established methods allocated £50m per year, the less established techniques £155m a year, and no additional funding for biomass conversions, other than the money already available through the Final Investment Decision Enabling for Renewables scheme.

The Renewable Energy Association (REA) said that it was “surprising” that less proven technologies had been given a higher budget than “cheaper, more established” methods like conventional EfW while there is a need to limit the cost of renewable energy to consumers.

The REA added that it was “very concerned” with the lack of extra funding for biomass conversions. Chief executive Dr Nina Skorupska said: “The limited funding for several key technologies will send shockwaves through the industry. It’s really important not to lose sight of the bigger picture today.

“Ultimately all renewables, not just in power but in heating and transport too, are really competing with fossil fuels that are mostly imported from overseas and damage the climate.”

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