Cuts in Government support for renewable energy send a "perverse signal" to other countries about the UK's attitude on the issue, the head of the UN environment programme has said.
As other countries embrace renewable energy Britain looks to be going the other way, Professor Jacqueline McGlade said.
Recent moves by the Government to cut support for clean onshore wind and solar power send out the wrong message, she said, ahead of the UN climate change conference which begins in Paris at the end of next month.
Prof McGlade told the BBC: "What I'm seeing worldwide is a move very much towards investment in renewable energy. To counterbalance that you see the withdrawal of subsidies and tax breaks for fossil fuels.
"What's disappointing is when we see countries such as the United Kingdom that have really been in the lead in terms of getting their renewable energy up and going - we see subsidies being withdrawn and the fossil fuel industry being enhanced."
She added: "It's a very serious signal - a very perverse signal that we do not want to create."