As you are aware, last week the Government lost its appeal against the Court ruling in December that its proposals to change the FiT tariff rates for solar PV were unlawful. However, the Government is now seeking leave to appeal to the higher level – the Supreme Court. They have 28 days from the judgment on 25 January 2012 to apply. It is not known whether the Government will be granted leave to appeal nor how long it will take for them to find out.
This means that the Government cannot legislate to apply new tariffs from 1 April 2012 to installations that took place between 12 December 2011 and before 2 March 2012. The Government did however lay legislation to reduce the tariff for new installations in Parliament on 19 January 2012. It will come into effect on 3 March 2012 and will apply to all installations with an eligibility date on or after this date. What this means is that any installation that takes place between 3 and 31 March will receive 43.3p/kWh in respect of generation until 31 March 2012 and 21p in respect of generation after 1 April 2012.
Until the outcome of the appeal is known, the Government cannot provide any certainty to consumers with installations that take place between 12 December 2011 and 2 March 2012. However, the Government has confirmed that these consumers will not receive a tariff lower than 21p (plus RPI index link) for 25 years.