As well as submitting a formal response to the consultation on 25 April, I prepared working draft proposals for ideas to improve the FiT for micro hydro schemes. I submitted these separately to DECC as the ideas could not be directly related to the consultation questions and I hoped to engage DECC in discussion. As this has not yet happened, I have now passed them through to the Minister of State in the hope that they may be looked at during rather than after this consultation.
These draft proposals contain ideas I have already discussed with a number of people in the industry and subsequently modified, but they will need further work to put into practice. This may or may not be feasible in the current FiT review, but please comment here to add to the debate which I hope will happen!
***ENDS Friday 22 June***
I have only just learnt of this consultation which proposes a new household planning fee for extensions and alterations including microgeneration of £100-£200 and new classes of business planning fee for energy developments.
It is not spelled out what fee will apply to micro-hydro.
The business class for energy developments is divided into Wind Farms and Other. The new minimum fee for Other proposed is £1000 for the first 100 sqare meters based on "site size or floor space". There is no clarification of how this would apply to hydro schemes. This is almost three times the current charge.
I have drafted a response to this consultation and invite additional comments on Blog page. Please also submit your own responses here: Fees for Planning Applications 2012 Start date 28/03/2012 - End date 22/06/2012.
The Environment Agency (England and Wales) have released some of their internal documents which provide guidance to their staff in carrying out abstraction and impoundment licensing processes. I am publishing this list on the mha website here as it is not currently available for access on the EA website and may be useful for applicants, particularly those with high head sites which are not currently covered in the external EA guidelines "GPG1".
A consultation has been announced by Gemserv, who run MCS, on guidelines for assessing competencies of individual installers and installation companies. Micro Hydro is covered in the consultation. The consultation ends at 5pm 9 July 2012.
*MCS certification is not available or planned for micro hydro products and installers (though some installers and products have been registered with MCS under "transitional arrangements"); the current DECC Feed-in tariff consultation (see earlier entries) is, however, still considering whether MCS will have some role in certification for micro hydro.
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