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Data in the latest CBI SME Trends Survey shows that the manufacturing sector is improving with orders and output up and UK manufacturers are looking to invest in the sector over the coming year. That's good news all round...
With recent news that gas prices are set to soar, it's not just the UK's householders that need help with their energy bills.
Britain's numerous small businesses will also have their bottom line affected by increases in fuel and energy bills, rumoured to be at somewhere between 60 and 70% over the next few years, and the only way to offset these costs will be to reduce current levels of energy use and to rely more on generating renewable energy.
Whilst saving energy may be the easy bit, generating supplemental renewable energy is a little harder for homes & small business. The technology is there and it is constantly improving but, according to energy expert Andrew Cooper of The Renewable Energy Association, there needs to be a vast improvement in the availability of government grants to allow people to afford to boost renewables.
Talking to the Huddersfield Daily Examiner, Andrew Cooper, who is also a local councillor in West Yorkshire, said:
âWhat we need from the Government is a commitment to help the industry grow and move forward.
âWhat we don’t want to do is wait until prices are so high that everybody’s clamouring for renewable energy when the industry has not been well-developed and supported to grow.
âWe really need support from the Government to enable us to get a mass market for renewables out there.â
Cllr Cooper points out that solar energy panels can cost in the region of around £10,000 to install and believes that government grants would help households & businesses to spread their costs.
âThe more people start producing their own heat and power, the more they will feel they have control over the problem.
âWe want to change people from simply being consumers of energy to being producers.â
With Gordon Brown promising a "green revolution" only last month, it's time for the government to put its money where its mouth is and provide grants to businesses that are willing to cut costs and promote this vision.
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