Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power

In a recent debate in the House of Lords, the Conservative energy minister Lord Marland – who will be overseeing the passage of upcoming new energy legislation through the House of Lords – appeared to contradict his minister in the Commons when he said:

“Under the previous Government, 14 gigawatts of onshore turbines were approved, 70 per cent of which is under way. It is our determination that there should be no dramatic increase in this and that the emphasis should be offshore.

A week earlier, in response to a question from Matthew Hancock MP, energy minister Charles Hendry had stated:

“We want communities to benefit directly from any wind farms that they host.

“That is why we will allow councils to keep the additional business rates paid by wind farms and support communities in having a stake in appropriately sited renewable energy projects such as wind farms.”

Two days after Lord Marland’s remarks, Mr Hendry told the House of Commons again that the government would offer incentives for more offshore wind, saying:

“The Government are committed to the development of wind energy in the UK.

“As an island nation we have outstanding wind resources and wind energy is an indigenous source of energy which is needed to meet our renewable energy and climate change goals.

“The wind industry can be a key player in creating the investment, exports and jobs we need to bring back economic prosperity, and the UK is already a world leader in offshore wind. We also want communities and individuals to benefit from the increase in renewable energy, including wind power, and to own a stake in our collective low carbon future.

“This is why we committed in the Coalition programme for Government to encouraging more community-owned renewable energy and allowing communities that host renewable energy projects to keep the additional business rates they generate.”

As we previously reported, the health secretary is known as an opponent of wind farms, and a Comres poll showed that only 7 per cent of Tory parliamentary candidates supported the expansion of onshore wind. But the Secretary of State Chris Huhne is an avid fan of wind farms and he told an energy industry conference last month:

“We have enormous potential in renewables. Thanks to the Renewables Obligation, onshore wind has become cost competitive. The UK is already the world leader in offshore wind and we are also supporting wave and tidal stream. The prospects for growth in all these areas is excellent.”

Left Foot Forward is left wondering what the position of the government actually is in relation to onshore wind?

12 Responses to “Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power”

  1. Consider Green

    #green Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power | Left … //bit.ly/bz6L0w

  2. Anon E Mouse

    Joss Garman – Common sense again from this new government.

    I love renewable energy of any description and offshore wind farms without the need for long expensive planning processes mean we may get electricity without blighting beautiful places by awful wind turbines.

    I guess this excellent news is thanks to Chris Huhne – roll on the future…

  3. Cary D Conover

    Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power | Left …: In a recent debate in the … //bit.ly/cOoBXj #WIND #RENEWABLE

  4. Joss Garman

    RT @leftfootfwd: Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power: //bit.ly/axEteC

  5. Green Energy

    >Check this Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power | Left … //bit.ly/bxrBZ8

  6. Charles Donnelly

    Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power | Left …: “That is why we will allow councils to kee… //bit.ly/agtHJ0

  7. Billy Blofeld

    Joss,

    Looks like you won’t be able to brand anyone who criticises you a “denier” anymore. From the New Scientist today – Climate scientists respond to ‘climategate’ report

    “IT’S time to abandon the black-and-white fiction that human-induced climate change is fact or conspiracy. Instead, accept that the climate is changing and that there are shades of grey about how fast, how severe the impact will be and what we can do about it.

    Maybe Left Foot Forwards can alter it’s editorial policy now and move away from the Gordon Brown attitude – that anyone who raises a doubt is a “flat earther”.

    Source: New Scientist

  8. MultiPoweredProducts

    Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power | Left …: In a recent debate in the House of Lords, … //bit.ly/cwqEJ8

  9. John Ruddy

    Because tory councils turn down planning! RT @leftfootfwd Energy minister-No dramatic increase in onshore wind power //bit.ly/c1WBJ3

  10. ConDem environment policy: All targets and no action… | My Political Ramblings

    […] no real drive for environmental reform, the government can’t even work out whether they want onshore of offshore wind power. And now consider Fox’s conflict with the Treasury over under whose remit it is to pay for […]

  11. Climate change sceptics and rural romantics – the Tories are a shambles on renewable energy | Left Foot Forward

    […] Energy minister: No dramatic increase in onshore wind power – Joss Garman, July 14th […]

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