Energy

Renewable energy organisations outline general election wishes

A group of trade bodies from the renewable energy sector have outlined the ‘key tests’ they’d like to see political parties take forward in next year’s general election.

The group – which includes the Anaerobic Digestion and Biogas Association (ADBA), the British Hydropower Association (BHA), the British Photovoltaic Association (BPA), the Renewable Energy Association (REA), RenewableUK, Scottish Renewables and the Solar Trade Association – has launched the renewables manifesto statement on the Action for Renewables website. It forms part of the group’s wish to ‘ensure that the renewable energy industry grows into the powerhouse it deserves to be, creating tens of thousands more jobs and stopping [the UK] being dependent on foreign governments for our power’.

The six ‘key tests’ outlined in the manifesto are:

  • support the Climate Change Act to help the UK meet its carbon commitments and back global efforts to tackle climate change;
  • set a new renewables target for 2030 of 30 per cent of UK energy;
  • back the Independent Committee on Climate Change's recommendation to set a binding target for low-carbon electricity by 2030;
  • fund the Renewable Heat Incentive for new applications after 2016;
  • boost the UK's Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation to reach the 10 per cent renewable energy target for transport by 2020; and
  • reform the EU Emissions Trading Scheme to ensure the market takes account of all sectors' ‘polluting cost of carbon emissions’.

The group is now calling on members of the public to write to the different party leaders to encourage them to take the principles forward into the general election.

Commenting on the launch of the campaign, Tony Juniper, Chair of Action for Renewables and former Executive Director of environmental campaigning body Friends of the Earth, said: “The renewable energy bodies have come together with clear and simple propositions. We need consistent and strong backing for renewable energy, not only to cut carbon emissions and tackle climate change, but also to harness the opportunities for growth and jobs and reduce our reliance on dirty fossil fuel imports from insecure parts of the world.

“A range of technologies have important roles to play, and I hope voters will contact party leaders and ask them to support our manifesto because none of these technologies can flourish without political backing.”