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Green Microgeneration

Comment 19th July 2010

Gordon Brown gave a boost to microgeneration (such as having a small wind turbine or solar panels on your own roof) by waiving tax on income earned from selling the electricity generated back to the grid.

I propose that this should still be true even if the wind turbine (as an example) that you have bought is not on your own roof.

This would allow people with a little spare cash who live in less windy parts of the country to buy a turbine and install it on a house in, for example, Cornwall, North Wales, and parts of Scotland.

It would also allow a homeowner who lives in a windy area, but who, doesn't have the cash to buy a turbine, to rent out his / her rooftop (also tax free) to someone who does.

The electricity company would simply install an outgoing meter alongside the incoming one, and credit the wind turbine owner with the value of the electricity generated, while also crediting the homeowner, on his / her electricity bill, with a "rooftop rent", which would be deducted from the wind turbine owner's bill.

Why does this matter?

This would not only benefit those able to afford a rooftop wind turbine, but also those who live in windy areas who cannot afford a wind turbine.

More importantly, over the course of a year a rooftop turbine generates around 20% of a household's electricity needs. This means that for every five turbines installed, our power stations need to provide electricity for one house less.

Finally, and most importantly, an increase in the number of rooftop turbines (or other microgeneration devices such as solar panels) and in the number of people directly benefiting from them would raise the profile of wind and renewables generally, and would show people directly how quiet and unobtrusive they are, reducing public oposition to larger wind turbines and wind farms.

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