New government must make renewables a priority

In the wake of a decisive general election result, the renewable sector is calling on the new government to send an early signal that low carbon energy and tackling climate change will remain a priority area.

The full implications of a majority Conservative government remain unclear, and clarity is urgently being sought in light of the party’s longstanding objections of further onshore wind, and the lack of coherent renewable policy in its 2015 election manifesto.

The industry will need time to fully digest the electoral result, but CEO of UrbanWind Paul McCullagh already points out the concern likely to be felt by the absence of a pro-renewable voice, now the Liberal Democrats will no longer be in government.

He also paid tribute to former energy secretary Ed Davey, who was one of the high profile MPs to be unseated.

“Many in the onshore wind industry will be concerned at this outcome, with the loss of a Liberal Democrat voice tempering the hard-line Conservative approach to the industry,” he said.

“We would urge the new government to declare its hand over wind energy, giving the sector the clear and unequivocal support that it needs to flourish. It is imperative that the prime minister avoids a continuation of the sometimes confusing and inconsistent approach to the technology we have experienced under the previous government.

“We were sad to see the former energy secretary Ed Davey lose his seat, as he has been a leading and influential advocate for renewables as a whole, and has championed the industry during his tenure.”

RenewableUK‘s chief executive. Maria McCaffery, said: “For the renewable energy sector as a whole, the most important signal that the government could send to show that it’s serious about cleaning up the way we generate electricity would be to set a clear 2030 decarbonisation target to provide long term certainty.

“If the new government values green growth and is serious about stimulating the economy, it needs to get behind this industry as swiftly as possible.”

Full industry reaction to follow