When the Government cuts itself, you and I are the ones left bleeding! The decision by solar panel manufacturers to seek a judicial review over U turns in policy should concern us. The idea of taking a Government to Court is not in itself a concern, in many ways it is a facility that is vital in an open democracy. However the wounds to the state that are occasionally struck in such cases should in theory be a way of alerting all of us to the unforeseen failures in national policy when outworked locally. What is inexcusable in this case is that the result is inevitably going to go against us thanks to the decision by the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to change their own rules on subsidies for large scale solar farms. The policy is not wrong, or generally speaking unpopular, indeed the success of this policy in raising the levels of power generated from solar sources should be trumpeted as a success of the coalition policies, frankly they have far too few of these.
What is desperately sad is that the Government having set a policy in order to achieve good outcomes has now changed its mind, with no recourse to you and I, yet it is you and I that will pay the price for this failure of leadership. If the Court case is successful, we will be obliged to pay for the costs of giving ourselves a bloody nose, and the remedies needed to get the solar tariffs back on track, and if the Court case fails, we will see the large scale expansion of the environmental supply of electricity come to an abrupt end. As I wrote in the heady days of May, when this change of policy was first announced, I believe that such U turns should be accountable to you and I. This is not a trivial matter of detail, the ending of these subsidies is fundamental to our wellbeing and our attempt to one planet living. Ed Davey as Minister of DECC and his henchmen should be ashamed of their failure, and even more that this Judicial Review is to take place, adding to our costs.