Farmers in England will no longer be able to claim Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) subsidies for fields with solar photovoltaic (PV) panels installed, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) has announced.
The new rules, which will come into force in January 2015, will mean that any field containing one or more solar panels will not be eligible for CAP subsidy payments. The rules are being changed to maximise the amount of farmland dedicated to growing crops, in order to give a boost to the food and farming industry, which is worth £97 billion to the British economy. According to Defra, the change will save taxpayers around £2 million in subsidies each year. It will also help rural communities by protecting the countryside from being ‘blighted’ by solar farms.
In a separate announcement, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) revealed that renewable energy subsidies for new large-scale solar farms will end in April 2015.
To read more about the new rules, go to: