Media leaks and anonymous briefings on cuts to renewable energy subsidies from the UK government are undermining investor confidence the UK market, Solarcentury head of public affairs Seb Berry has said.

On Friday several national newspapers cited senior cabinet and Whitehall sources when running stories alluding to substantial cuts to renewable energy subsidies being made in the coming weeks, followed by a report on Friday’s BBC World at One radio show which also suggested the same.

But while the reports have gone unchallenged by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, there has yet to be any clarification from the department as to what shape subsidy cuts could take and DECC could not be contacted by Solar Power Portal for comment this morning.

Berry said it was this “implied threat of immediate huge cuts” which had the potential of scaring off investment in the space, which he said was the “total opposite” to what the government should be doing in order to manage solar towards grid parity.  

“Solarcentury very much welcomed the new secretary of state's public commitment to a ‘solar revolution’.  One of the keys to delivering that solar revolution will be transparency, stability and predictability of government policy en route to grid parity.

“That is a huge political prize for the new government if ministers get this five-year transition right and absolutely consistent with the original purpose of the feed-in tariff… maintaining investor confidence in the UK sector in the coming years is absolutely vital,” Berry added.

And his criticism was echoed by Community Energy England chairman Philip Wolfe, who said community energy – a sector the Conservative Party has previously pledged to support – would be particularly badly affected because all of the sector’s efforts were involved in renewable energy.  

“We support an orderly transition to a subsidy-free energy sector, where all technologies stand on their own feet and carry the full costs associated with their waste and their emissions. However the recent string of panic announcements on renewables has been anything but orderly,” Wolfe said.

Renowned environmentalist and founder of the Conservative Environment Network Ben Goldsmith also weighed into the developments on Twitter, noting how much of DECC’s annual budget was spent on renewables in comparison to nuclear power.

While clarification from DECC has yet to be forthcoming, Amber Rudd is to be quizzed on the department’s priorities for this year tomorrow morning in the first Energy and Climate Change Select Committee hearing.