Ed Miliband – Question 3
Remote villages, especially in upland areas such as the Peak District, have significant opportunities for landscape-sensitive energy generation. What place is there for smaller community-scale renewable energy projects that fulfil local energy needs directly, without feeding into a national grid?
A big one! Local communities can spot new opportunities, and by working together can make sure their area leads the transition to low carbon.
The Government offers grants to allow householders, businesses and communities to install technologies such as micro turbines, combined heat and power, heat pumps and solar thermal. And in the Budget, the Chancellor said that over the next two years there will be another £70 million for decentralised small-scale and community low-carbon energy.
I think the role of communities generating their own clean power should not just be about being off the national grid, though. I want every town and village in the UK to be able to make the transition to low-carbon living, and to be able to make plans based on generating power, so I am introducing a guaranteed price for people to feed renewable electricity into the grid.