The UK government’s doomed case against the challenge to its planned cuts of solar feed-in tariffs has been rejected by the Supreme Court.
The last ditch attempt by the government to overthrow previous decisions by the High Court and the Court of Appeal that its action to cut solar feed-in tariffs during the consultation period as “legally flawed” failed on Friday 23 March 2012.
The Supreme Court’s rejection of the government’s appeal marks the end of the legal wrangle and leaves the thousands of homeowners and businesses who installed solar panels after the 12 December cut-off date and before 3 March better off.
The lucky ones will now receive the higher FIT rate of 43.3p per kWh, instead of the lower rate of 21p.
Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey said he was “disappointed” that the Supreme Court did not to grant permission to hear the case, but said that the ruling “draws a line under the case”, which was instigated by his predecessor Chris Huhne.
“We will now focus all our efforts on ensuring the future stability and cost effectiveness of solar and other microgeneration technologies for the many, not the few,” he said.
Andy Atkins, the executive director of Friends of the Earth, which brought the challenge along with other solar installers, welcomed the ruling that the government’s “botched… solar plans are illegal”.
“[The] landmark decision which will prevent ministers causing industry chaos with similar subsidy cuts in future,” he added. “The Coalition must now get on with the urgent task of restoring confidence in UK solar power.”
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