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Dear Prime Minister: Feed-in Tariff for solar PV panels

Here is another letter you may wish to use as inspiration for your own:
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Dear Prime Minister,

I believe it is an ill-advised folly to reduce the Feed-in Tariff for solar PV panels so drastically and so soon, especially when the original promised reduction was much less and much farther into the future.

Not only does it go contrary to the Government's stated aims of encouraging the reduction of CO2 emissions; it will also create havoc in the PV manufacturing and installation industry.

A more gentle phasing of the reductions would allow more people to consider helping the move towards renewable energy production. And we do need to continue with this quest, not only for our own future, but also to set an example to the rest of the world.

The FIT approach was an inspired one when it was conceived, placing the lion's share of the costs of energy consumption on those that bury their heads in the sand and don't make an effort to contribute. To stop this in its tracks is unfair on those that have been a little slower than others (myself included), or on those that can little afford the capital costs of installing renewable energy hardware.

I believe we should all be encouraged to go further and tap into as many renewable resources as we can, in the long-term interests of all of us. This may become especially poignant when fossil fuels become harder and more costly to find and extract. But we should not be waiting for that to happen. We should be expanding the renewable technologies even before the costs of fossil fuels rise, because of the pollution effects of the latter.

In other words, there are two strong arguments against burning fossil fuels: CO2 emissions; and escalating costs.

Of course, we need a wider mix of renewable technologies, and we need to have the biggest possible power grid system to enable the power generated by what are largely unpredictable resources to be moved around to where the demand is. If this can be achieved, then all the fluctuations created by largely cyclic solar and tidal production and totally random wind and wave generation can be smoothed out, using the extremely flexible hydro resources that we already have as the final mechanism for this purpose. And by this means the existing fossil and nuclear facilities can be gradually reduced until the ultimate hydrogen fission technology can be developed. I fear that one is still a long way off, so we need renewables as a medium- to long-term stop-gap.

If we do not act on this, then I fear we are doomed as a planet. Easter Island should serve as an example to us of what can happen when a society uses up all its natural resources. And if a 50% increase in the CO2 content of the atmosphere since the start of the industrial revolution is not a big enough alarm bell, then maybe a rise in the Thames level such that it floods parts of your venerable establishments will eventually bring home the realisation that we have a global problem.

Yours faithfully,

Derek McLean, Dunbar, East Lothian.