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The recent budget confirmed the removal of the Climate Change Levy (CCL) exemption for renewable electricity. The implications for SMEs are significant.
The budget was marked by substantial cuts to government spending to move towards the aim of eliminating the deficit. While the reductions in benefits attracted the most attention, changes to the renewable energy market could have more impact on small to medium sized businesses.
Renewable source electricity (RSE) will be liable for the Climate Change Levy (a tax on energy delivered to non-domestic users in the UK) after Levy Exemption Certificates (LECs) are dropped (although there is no timetable). Power generated by wind, solar or other sustainable sources will be more expensive, with the increases in price likely to be passed to business customers. You can find more of the detail in the official government document.
Some observers see this as a necessary reduction in expensive subsidies: the Chancellor said the removal of the exemption will earn the Treasury £450 million in 2015/16, rising to £910 million in 2020/21. But others complain that the move sets back the UK’s journey to becoming a low-carbon economy, especially as the government has been supportive of fracking and has lowered taxes on North Sea oil and gas.
RenewableUK, the trade association representing the wind, wave and tidal energy industries, is one of the critics. Its Director of Policy, Dr Gordon Edge, called it “a punitive measure for the clean energy sector” that undermines “vital financial support for renewable energy producers” and constitutes “another example of this Government’s unfair, illogical and obsessive attacks on renewables”.
“We’re suddenly looking at a substantial amount of lost income for clean energy companies which was totally unexpected,” Edge added. “Levy Exemption Certificates account for just over 6% on onshore wind generators’ revenues.”
While generators fret about projects slipping into unprofitability, there may be an unexpected silver lining for small to medium sized companies. As suppliers scramble to find customers for their renewable sourced electricity, there are eye-catching discounts on green energy, at least in the short term.
For SMEs looking to ‘go green’ there has never been a better time. Even those more motivated by price might be surprised by how much cheaper electricity rates have become. For a fast expert overview of your options just fill in the form at the top right of this page or call 0330 0100 251. You could be getting cheaper, greener energy in just 20 minutes.
"Very easy. Bea Luseni very efficient & knowledgeable."This review was posted by Alan Duffy on the 31st of March 2017
Super helpful and easy to work with
"Recommend this company in a heartbeat - Nicole Borneuf was super easy to talk to, was not pushy in the slightest, very helpful and replied with all my questions very professionally and did all she could to help. I had to deal with a few companies to sort my business energy out, all but Nicole were too pushy for my liking and I refused to follow through with them. Thank Nicole - you are a credit to your company, thank you for making the stressful energy change so easy."This review was posted by Mia Drew on the 29th of March 2017
An Extremely Competent Company
"Switch my business has not only helped my SME secure a good energy deal for the second year running but Jessica swiftly found a alternative supplier for me when I was let down on the day of switching by the new contractual provider I had chosen some 4 months previously. Being suddenly out of contract and without provider is everyone's energy nightmare. Greatest thanks."This review was posted by S McMillan on the 29th of March 2017
Helpful, friendly and we saved lots of money!
"Jessica Purnell was helpful and friendly, she made the whole process easy and simple AND we saved lots of money thanks Jess"This review was posted by Melanie Baker on the 23rd of March 2017
Quick & Easy
"Kabibi was very helpful and the whole process was very efficient. The one small reservation I had was that I was phoned up by Kabibi almost immediately having received my online quote - which wasn't enough time for me to finish reading the quotes! Fortunately she was able to assist me in a greater savings on both Gas & Electricity, and so as long as the switchover is seamless I will remain very happy with the service."This review was posted by Amanda Brown on the 21st of March 2017