Subsidy withdrawal from renewable energy entirely lawful – Court of Appeal


It would be better if the government could reach a reasonable conclusion and stick to a decision once made. Nuclear power stations could spell future disasters. Renewable energy – especially solar energy is the obvious answer so why dither about funding research? No one in their right mind wants wind-turbines sprouting up all over the place, but solar panels on roof-tops appear to offer a sensible alternative.

UK Human Rights Blog

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Infinis Energy Holdings Ltd v HM Treasury and Anor [2016] EWCA Civ 1030 – read judgment

In July 2015 the government announced that it was removing a subsidy for renewable energy. Its decision in fact was to take away the exemption that renewable source electricity enjoyed from a tax known as the climate change levy. We have covered previous episodes in the renewables saga on the UKHRB in various posts.

The appellant, the largest landfill gas operator in the UK and one of the leading onshore wind generators, challenged the government’s removal of the subsidy on the basis of the EU law principles of foreseeability, legal certainty, the protection of legitimate expectations or proportionality. At first instance the judge upheld the Secretary of State’s decision, and the Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal against this finding.

Legal and Factual Background

The subsidy took the form of an exemption for renewable…

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