Nov 1st 2012
Wind industry hails investment surge as it comes under attack
The wind industry is on track to power one in 10 UK homes by 2015, according to new projections by Renewable UK published on Tuesday 30 October. The trade body's latest State of Industry Report found new investment in offshore wind increased by 60% to £1.5bn in the year to June 2012. There was also an increase in the amount of onshore wind capacity being approved at the local level for the first time in five years, with decision times 10% quicker. Wind power is expected to contribute up to 7% of the UK's electricity by the end of 2012 and will have 13.5GW of capacity in operation by the end of 2014. Chief executive Maria McCaffery said the "strong" figures underlined the importance of a "secure trading climate" to attract investment.
The figures were published before wind power came under attack. Energy minister John Hayes said wind turbines can no longer be "imposed on communities". According to The Telegraph on Wednesday 31 October, Hayes noted the Department of Energy and Climate Change's recent call for evidence on onshore wind was intended not only to analyse costs in the sector but to understand communities' "genuine desires". Arguing "enough is enough" with onshore wind, Hayes concluded that "even if a minority of what is in the system is built we are going to reach our 2020 target".
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