To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the answer of 11 June 2012, Official Report, column 204W, on renewable energy feed-in tariffs, if he will make it his policy to seek parliamentary approval for any agreement between his Department and relevant developers on comfort to support early investment decisions.
The draft energy Bill 2012 contains a number of provisions which would enable the Government to issue what are called “investment instruments” in advance of the regime for Contracts for Difference (CfDs) being established. These provisions have been put in place to allow the Department to offer comfort to developers of low carbon electricity generating projects that need to take final investment decisions ahead of the introduction of the electricity market reforms contained in the draft Bill.
The draft Bill specifies that the issue of an investment instrument is subject to conditions, including that a draft of the instrument has been laid before Parliament. The final issue of the investment instrument is of course subject to the enactment of the draft Bill.
The draft Bill also contains provisions enabling the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change to make modifications to electricity supply licences or to make regulations by statutory instrument in connection with investment instruments. Both of these provisions would be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.