SEPA takes aim at Scottish Hydropower with huge fee increases

SEPA takes aim at Scottish Hydropower with huge fee increases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday August 25, 2017

SEPA takes aim at Scottish Hydropower with huge fee increases

The British Hydropower Association [BHA] is dismayed with the proposals by SEPA that affect permit application and annual subsistence charges that are paid to SEPA ‘to support their regulatory activities’

At a time when the industry is reeling from the punitive and extortionate non-domestic rates being imposed by Scottish Government, many members are currently being informed by SEPA that they will shortly be paying many thousand pounds more in annual “charges”.

In one case of which the BHA is aware, annual charges on a single scheme have increased from just under £1000 to approaching £20000.

The Scottish Government’s commitment to support hydropower does not appear to extend to recognising that to continually burden small-scale hydro with ever increasing ‘taxation’ overheads will simply discourage future development activity. This approach will eventually lead to starving projects of cash that might otherwise be invested in future projects, stimulating local economic activity and creating local jobs.

BHA Chairman, Adrian Loening said “This is the introduction of a new tax post-investment and is therefore grossly unreasonable and unfair. How can SEPA justify the scale of increases proposed? Just how much administration is required for a hydro scheme as monitoring of compliant schemes and the handling of the end of year SEPA returns is not a particularly onerous one.

We are urging members to respond to the consultation by the deadline of the 3rd of November and to attend the SEPA charging workshop at their offices in Perth on the 27th of September.

The Association is very concerned about the proposed introduction of these fees and we will be submitting a very rigorous response to the consultation”

Details of the consultations can be found at these links –

To attend the SEPA charging workshop on the 27th of September, please email Jill Kelly at

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