Marks & Spencer scraps solar power plan

London, UK: Food retailer, Marks & Spencer has cancelled plans to install solar panels throughout its distribution centre following government cuts to spending on environmentally-friendly projects.

Richard Gillies, Marks & Spencer’s director of Plan A, CSR and sustainability said, in a speech to non-governmental organisations, that uncertainty about government policy led it to abandon its plans.

The retailer had planned on fitting solar panels at its Bradford distribution centre, which already produces zero emissions. “We went through all the work [for the solar array] only to find the Feed-in Tariff revised … and the CRC turned into a carbon tax,” Gillies said.
M&S had been “looking for consistency and a framework we can make decisions in,” he said.

The government’s reduction of subsidies under the Feed-in Tariff scheme for solar installations of greater than 50kW was confirmed last month, much to the disappointment of those within the industry.

According to the Department of Energy and Climate Change, there was a greater than anticipated number of applications for large-scale solar installations and this was drawing funding away from smaller household installations.