Isles MP Angus MacNeil has been notified that the UK Minister of State for Energy and Intellectual Property is scheduled to visit the Hebrides next year.

Baroness Neville-Rolfe is expected to visit the islands in May 2017 to discuss renewable energy opportunities.

This follows the UK Government’s recent announcement that Remote Island Wind projects would not be eligible for support in the next Contract for Difference Auction – a vital means of support to make projects sustainable.

A consultation has been launched by the UK Government, which will run until the end of January, to look at whether island wind projects should be treated differently to onshore wind projects which do not currently receive support.

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Mr MacNeil said: “I welcome the Minster’s plans to visit the Hebrides and see for herself the potential there is for renewables here and to meet with those planning projects here in the islands.

“I have also been asked to meet with Greg Clark MP, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) prior to the end of the consultation and I hope that he too will take up the offer to visit the islands. I would encourage as many groups, agencies and individuals locally to respond to the consultation.

“The meeting timescale four months after the close of the consultation is a little surprising but I hope the Minister will have some more positive news on island renewables during her visit.

“The announcement that island projects would not be included in the next CfD round was hugely disappointing and a real blow to the islands and so I hope that the new year will bring about some more positive progress.”

To respond to the UK Government’s consultation please visit