I am surprised by the recent decision of the Economy Minister Jonathon Bell to end the Renewable Heating Incentive.
The very fact that ‘over-subscription’ was cited as one of the reasons to end the scheme is in fact evidence that it was actually working.
At a recent Christian Aid conference held in Ireland, the UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights Philip Alston made the point that tax policy reflects the real priorities of a government.
What priorities are reflected in the minister’s decision to end a scheme which encouraged people to switch from fossil fuels to renewable sources of heating?
We are told that ending the scheme would apparently avoid a bill of £27 million.
But at the same time our politicians are keen to forfeit up to an estimated £240 million from the block grant in order to slash corporation tax.
It seems that political priorities are currently skewed in favour of big business interests, whilst the need to shift to a clean energy future for the sake of the global poor and future generations is being ignored.
David Thomas, Education & Campaigns Coordinator, Christian Aid, Belfast BT8