Wednesday, January 30, 2008

BERR Listens To Renewables Obligation Waste Concerns

BERR has published the Government’s response to the consultation on the reform of the Renewables Obligation, which took place during summer 2007. In its response the Government has recognised many of the concerns raised by ESA during the consultation period.

The regulations for the measurement and sampling of biomass have been proven to be ill suited to the heterogeneity of mixed waste fuels. Consequently waste-fired power plants have been unable to satisfy Ofgem with sufficient certainty as to the biomass content of their inputs and therefore been unable to claim ROCs for their renewable generation. BERR had already conceded the principle of deeming the biomass content of waste but had previously suggested that this should be set at the conservative level of 35%. In response to ESA lobbying, the Government has now decided initially to raise the proposed deemed level to 50%, in line with the level recognised under the climate change levy.

BERR has also noted the difficulties that changes to the qualifying index for good quality combined heat and power (CHP) made to the ROC eligibility of waste-fired CHP facilities. The Government has consequently decided to change the qualifying criterion for such plants, which will now be based on a single efficiency threshold of 35% gross calorific value.

Other changes made by the Government include a commitment to the principle of grandfathering support levels for renewable electricity projects. More at ESA UK.

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