Page last updated at 05:47 GMT, Thursday, 6 August 2009 06:47 UK

Solar panel planning fee scrapped


Bruce Cross, managing director of PV Systems, says while the removal of planning application fees for panels is a step in the right direction, more needs to be done

Planning charges for solar panels and other micro-generating equipment for domestic use are to be scrapped.

The environment minister hopes changes to the planning rules governing micro-generation will make it a more attractive option for householders.

Equipment that will come under the new rules includes ground source heat pumps and biomass flues.

Environment Minister Jane Davidson said micro-generation could help remove people from fuel poverty in Wales.

She said: "Micro-generation has a major role to play in decarbonising energy supply and helping tackle climate change.

"Wales in particular has a large share of off gas-grid, hard to heat and hard to treat homes.

"In these cases, micro-generation can be the most effective method of removing people from fuel poverty and providing energy security.

"Households not only have an opportunity to minimise their carbon footprint and that of Wales, but also to reduce fuel bills and fuel poverty.

"These changes will enable householders to install certain types of domestic micro-generation equipment, including solar thermal panels, ground and water source heat pumps and flues associated with biomass and combined heat and power systems on, or within the boundary of houses and flats, subject to certain legislation."

The changes will come into effect in September.

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