Politicians are failing us, say 95% of renewable energy firms

An overwhelming majority (95%) of renewable energy companies say that the main political parties have failed to address the needs of the industry in their election campaigns.

The figure comes from a survey of 136 members of the Renewable Energy Association (REA).

The Green Party was viewed as the party that would be ‘best for the industry’ (29%) with the Liberal Democrats seen as the next best. The Greens have pledged to spend £35bn over the next parliament on renewable generation , while the Lib Dems plan to source 60% of electricity from renewable sources by 2030.

Red or blue

REA members were less bullish about the two parties most likely to form a government after the election, with nearly a fifth (18%) of respondents sayingt the industry would be in the best hands under Labour and 15% supporting the Conservatives.

The minimal level of support for David Cameron’s party is unsurprising, given its pledge to end subsidies for onshore wind and only give significant support to renewable technologies that “clearly represent value for money”.

Ed Miliband’s party is more supportive of renewables, having launched a dedicated Green Plan and pledge to decarbonise the electricity supply by 2030.

In a recent survey of edie readers, just 1.1% thought that the Conservatives had the best green policies, with 58% plumping for the Green Party.

Need for leadership

REA chief executive Nina Skorupska commented: “These figures show first-hand the concern of renewable energy companies up and down the country at how the political parties are failing to adequately address the needs of our industry.

“The next government will need to show much more leadership early on and face-up to the challenge of ensuring that the UK meets its ambitious renewables targets, which will allow our industry to play a key role if the regulatory environment enables us to expand, innovate and thrive.

“We very much look forward to working with the next government to address the concerns of the renewable energy, ensuring the UK makes the transition to the low-carbon economy that will bring with it cheaper bills, more jobs and greater energy security.”

A recent poll of sustainability professionals by IEMA als revealed a broad mistrust of the major political parties.

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Brad Allen

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