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Energy minister claims critics 'tell lies' and pedal 'nonsense'

Energy minister Andrea Leadsom has accused critics on Twitter of lying and distorting her words.

One critic (@acre) posted a link to an article that claimed Ms Leadsom had admitted she was not aware of the exact number of solar jobs that would be affected by the changes to the country’s solar policies.


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Last month Caroline Lucas, Green party MP for Brighton Pavilion, asked Ms Leadsom if the government had assessed the effect of changes to solar policy on current and future employment levels in the sector.

Ms Leadsom replied that the numbers on employment in the sector were not robust enough to show how many jobs are supported directly by either the Feed-in Tariff (FIT) or the Renewables Obligation (RO).

For this reason, she did not provide exact details of the effect of proposed changes on employment levels.

This month, however, saw nearly 1,000 staff laid off as solar energy firm Mark Group fell into administration on the same day energy-efficiency solutions provider Climate Energy posted a notice on their website that it, too, had entered administration.

The two clean energy firms went into administration within hours of each other on Wednesday, 7 October.

Another critic on Twitter posted a link to a poll conducted by Keep Fits, a campaign from the climate change charity 10:10. It found Britain’s favourite source of electricity to be wind and solar, and the least favourite to be nuclear and shale gas.

Ms Leadsom described the poll as “more nonsense being pedalled by supposedly green supporters”.

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Other critics have condemned Ms Leadsom’s comments concerning fossil fuels at the Conservative party conference (4-7 October 2015), where she said there was no chance in the near term that the UK would move away from fossil fuels.

When @gelmo1981 accused Ms Leadsom of wanting to lengthen Britain’s use of fossil fuels, Ms Leadsom said that was a “total distortion” of what she had said.

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