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National Trust sets ambitious renewables target

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The National Trust has pledged to produce half of its power from renewable sources by 2020.

Under plans formulated recently, it will dramatically improve on the 1,500 renewable projects already sited on its land to reach the 50 percent target. It hopes to diversify its energy mix by the end of the decade so that 21 percent comes from biomass, 27 percent hydro, 1 percent heat pumps, 0.5 percent solar, grid electricity 26 percent, gas 15 percent and 3 percent LPG.

It will also attempt to reduce energy consumption by 20 percent to not only save the trust money on utility bills, but provide it with an alternative source of income under the Feed-in Tariff and Renewable Heat Incentive.

Wind power will not feature in the trust’s energy mix in order to protect the historic nature of many of its estates and reduce the environmental impact of the planned changes.

Patrick Begg, rural enterprise director at the National Trust, told the BBC: “We’ve put all our effort to make the big leap in generating renewable energy from all our properties. Our new programme will get us to (50 percent of energy) by 2020.”