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New UK solar FIT could cut sector workforce in half

8 Nov 2011

The introduction of the proposed new feed-in tariff (FIT) levels for solar power in the UK could see more than half of companies in the sector cut staff numbers by 50 per cent.

Solar is rapidly becoming big business in the UK with 25,000 people employed in the industry compared to just 3,000 around two years ago, according to research seen by the Financial Times.

The Renewable Energy Association and Solar Trade Association surveyed 140 solar businesses employing 4,055 workers, the companies in this group said they were likely to reduced numbers by 1,715 should the suggested subsidy levels come into force. Around 56 per cent said they would have to cut their workforce by half or more.

The new FIT rates were proposed at the end of last month with Climate Change and Energy Minister Greg Barker arguing the current support system is unsustainable. The industry has been quick to react and criticise the move with Scottish Energy Minister Fergus Ewing also expressing concern lat week.

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