The UK’s climate targets are at risk due to uncertainty in the UK energy market, especially in the renewable energy sector.
The government have decided to cut wind power subsidies from April next year. Major utility companies like Scottish Power,who have several windfarm expansions planned, are now rushing to finish the ones that have already been granted planning permission. This decision, aiming to keep energy bills low, has been heavily scrutineer by industry experts. Wind power has developed to become one of the cheapest and most efficient sources of renewable energy in the UK, costing £20 less per megawatt hour than conventional coal or gas power. Despite popular belief, windfarms are highly welcomed with a recent ComRes poll showing that 73% of people support onshore windfarms. Greenpeace say these statistics show the UK government is “backing the wrong horse”.
if you want to hit your climate change targets you need onshore wind, otherwise you’re going to struggle to hit them and it’ll cost you significantly more money.
Keith Anderson, CCO, Scottish Power
How does this affect the the UK?
Earnest & Young produce an annual report which analyses the development of renewable energy worldwide. The UK, which usually features in the top 10, has slipped down to 14th place. The news of the Hinkley Point C and the closure of the Department of Energy & Climate Change has cast a shadow over the renewable energy sector. Meanwhile, countries such as South Africa, France and Mexico has shot up into the top 10.
UK Government policies were not inspiring confidence in investors.
Ben Warren, Head of Energy Corporate Finance, Earnest & Young
Scottish Power are now erecting wind turbines at a staggering rate of 1 per day just to take advantage of the scheme while it lasts. It seems wind energy has a questionable future past the April 2017 deadline.