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Fuel Bills

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Fuel bills are set to rise as the government are set to axe green energy saving schemes.

The Feed-in tariff was first introduced in April 2010, it is designed to encourage small scale renewable electricity in the UK up to 5 megawatt, by using Solar PV Installation, and by making payments to individuals the tariff also invests in specific renewable electricity.

Registered homeowners or tenants who have the Solar panels installed are entitled to a sum of money for every unit of electricity that is generated, therefore it could take only a matter of years before money is recouped from what was spent on the installation of the Solar panels.

The government have announced that from April 1st 2012 Feed-in tariffs for Solar PV installations below 250kw will not be subsidised for any projects registered after 12th December 2011.

If registered after this date solar panel users will receive a new lower level of support from 1st April 2012, Solar PV installations registered before will not be affected.

Solar panels were due to be fitted on more than 100,000 housing association properties helping tenants to reduce their bills as gas and electric prices rise by 20%.

The axe of the green energy scheme will see many housing association homes faced with a significant increase to their bills.

Howard Johns, of the Cut Don’t Kill campaign said: “If this huge cut goes ahead, it will put a stop to this drive to help people escape from fuel poverty.

“It is crazy to remove a lifeline like this.

“A cut this big will lock millions in to the power companies ever-rising prices.”

The policy has helped to create developments such as a housing estate in Aspley, Nottingham that recently had solar panels installed in more than 600 houses.

The green energy saving scheme was to fit solar panels into the roofs of 4,000 homes in Mid-Wales and similar plans were in place for 3,000 homes in Durham. These are now being put into doubt.

A scheme like the Feed-in tariff makes renewable electricity accessible to a wide marker; it is a good way to reduce the carbon footprint and also makes financial sense.

The amount homeowners and tenants save on bills depends on a range of different factors, from the number of panels that have been installed, the amount of sun the panels receive on a daily basis, where you live and the angle of the roof.

Solar Panels are estimated to save £150 a year on fuel costs for homeowners.

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By Amanda Bainbridge