United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Developer abandons CfD legal challenge

Banks Group has withdrawn a legal challenge against the UK government after it launched a consultation on changes to the contract for differences (CfD) support scheme.

Banks Group operates 224MW of onshore wind capacity in Scotland and northern England
Banks Group operates 224MW of onshore wind capacity in Scotland and northern England

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The UK firm launched a legal challenge against the government in August 2019 arguing that the CfD mechanism discriminated in favour of offshore wind at the expense of onshore wind.

The case had briefly delayed the country’s third tender round last year, in which onshore wind was unable to compete.

But Banks Group has now withdrawn its challenge, as it expects onshore wind to be eligible to compete in the UK’s fourth tender round, the developer’s managing director Richard Dunkley explained.

Its withdrawal follows a government consultation that proposes reinstating onshore wind — which has been barred from competing at auction since 2015 — to UK tenders from 2021.

Neither the developer or the government would comment on whether a settlement was reached between the two parties.

Banks Group operates 224MW of UK onshore wind capacity, and secured contracts for three onshore wind projects in the UK’s first CfD auction in 2015.

It also has two consented onshore wind projects with a combined capacity of 150MW.

The developer's managing director Richard Dunkley added: “Maximising the deployment of all renewable energy generation technologies, including onshore wind, will allow the UK to increase the rate at which we can decarbonise our power supply and achieve our climate change targets, as well as benefiting British consumers through lower energy prices.”

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