NEPIC, NEB and Industry Leaders meet with Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
On February 18th 2010, NEPIC and NEB together with a strong industry delegation met with Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. Our delegation had a 60 minute private discussion at Shotton Hall with the Minister ahead of the Easington Constituency Labour Party Annual Dinner. All delegates were given the opportunity to speak with the Minister directly and this provided an excellent platform for positive discussion. Three key themes resulting from the debate were:
1. Finance - obtaining capital was still proving very difficult especially taking into account the risks associated. Delegates spoke about a potential Government solution that would lower the risk of financing and the possibility of a loan guarantee scheme.
2. The misalignment of the 3 policies - Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO), the Renewables Obligation (RO) and the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). It was felt that no financial mechanism links them together and there needs to be a consistent carbon value.
3. Messaging - there is a need for consistency of message across all sectors - political, industry and general public in order that the positive benefits of biofuels and biorenewable energy be conveyed correctly to all sectors and audiences’.
A number of senior industrialists from existing investor companies in renewable energy together with senior representatives from prospective investors were joined by Centre For Process Innovation (CPI), National Non Food Crops Centre, and local MP’s Dari Taylor (Stockton South) and Iain Wright (Hartlepool). John Brady, NEPIC Senior Biofuels Project Manager who hosted the event, thanked the Minister for his time and valuable contribution and also thanked Dari Taylor who facilitated the private meeting. John commented” it is not often we get an opportunity with a Minister to discuss a wide range of topics with a large group in such a forum. Ed Miliband was both very attentive and approachable to our discussion and agreed to examine in further detail the key themes arising.”