Act now to take advantage of energy tariffs

Envirolink Northwest has welcomed the launch of feed-in tariffs, a new government scheme designed to benefit businesses across the UK with financial and environmental rewards.

The scheme, which launched on 1 April 2010, will enable businesses installing small scale renewable energy generating technologies such as wind turbines and solar photovoltaic panels on their premises, to claim payments for the electricity they produce whilst at the same time benefiting from reduced energy bills. The tariff levels have been calculated to offer a 5-8% return on initial investment in the technology.

In addition, electricity produced that is surplus to requirements can be sold back to the grid, producing another revenue stream. The government is guaranteeing these payments for up to 25 years depending on the technology. It has also been confirmed that installations commissioned since July 2009, when the policy was announced, will benefit from the scheme.

Joe Martin, manager of low carbon market development at Envirolink Northwest, said: "Businesses across our region should make sure that they benefit from the launch of the FIT scheme. Not only does it offer a significant opportunity to reduce the region's CO2 emissions but the guaranteed income levels mean that businesses can generate their own electricity for free once the capital costs of the equipment have been covered. With energy prices set to continue rising the business benefits of generating your own energy have never been better."

Envirolink Northwest is funded by Government, local authorities, industry and the NWDA to support the development and growth of the environmental technologies sector.

Liam Fisher, sector development manager for energy and environment, NWDA commented: "Energy and Environmental Technologies is one of the region's most important business sectors, with regional companies able to supply parts, components, products and services across the range of renewable energy technologies.

"The NWDA welcomes this announcement, which will enable businesses to reduce their carbon footprint, become more self sufficient in energy and earn extra income."

Envirolink Northwest offers, at no cost to businesses, impartial advice and guidance to those looking to install renewable technologies. The tailored support includes access to in-depth up-to-date knowledge of renewable energy options, advice on finance and grant funding, help with planning and connecting to the grid. Links to regional suppliers of renewable technologies, and invitations to events and workshops to share best practice complete the package.

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