Peter Bennett, editor of Solar Power Portal, and sister publications Next Energy News and Solar Business Focus UK, is to step down from his role today.

After four years working for parent company Solar Media, he is leaving to take on new challenges.

Bennett joined Solar Media in 2011 and was appointed UK editor a year later. Since then he has spearheaded our UK coverage during the domestic industry’s period of fastest growth and played a key role in making our platforms essential reading for everyone involved in UK solar.

“It’s been my absolute pleasure to report on the UK solar industry over the last four years. From the introduction of the feed-in tariff to genuinely competing with onshore wind in CfDs, the UK solar sector has moved from strength to strength, prospering despite continual policy intervention,” Bennett said.

“It’s disappointing to see that as I leave this role the government is proposing such harsh cuts to solar support, but I also believe that the UK solar industry is one of the most resilient and innovative sectors out there. Combined with Solar Media’s exciting plans for the future of our UK clean energy coverage, I am confident that the UK will continue to prosper and build on its solar expertise.”

Bennett leaves our UK coverage in the capable hands of Liam Stoker, our UK reporter, and John Parnell, Solar Media’s deputy head of content.

A key focus for our UK team will be to respond to recent political interventions in the UK solar market by helping our valued readers and advertisers chart a way forward in what has become an undeniably difficult time for the industry within a relatively short space of time.

In addition to our ongoing commitment to solar, we will be looking to rapidly grow our newest site, Next Energy News, which we launched last year specifically to highlight the business opportunities in the broader clean energy sector in the UK.

Through NEN we will aim to provide in-depth coverage of areas such as renewable heat, energy efficiency and storage, all of which are expected to come increasingly to the fore as homeowners and businesses look for ways to cut energy bills and reduce emissions.

Solar Media’s managing director, Tim Mann, said: “The growing need for cleaner forms of energy consumption and management in the home and workplace opens up a range of new opportunities for installers who have honed their skills in solar and are now looking for new prospects. Through our enhanced coverage on Next Energy News we will make sure that we provide the best information possible on where these opportunities lie and how to access them.”

“But we also remain fully committed to solar and making sure this vibrant industry continues to have a strong voice in the crucial debate over Britain’s low-carbon future,” Mann added.

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