Poll backs more ambitious green power

Two thirds of the population think the Government's plans to pay residents and businesses for generating green electricity are 'not ambitious enough' according to a new poll.

Generating renewable energy from solar panels, small hydro and wind turbines is not ambitious enough according to the majority of people polled by YouGov on behalf of Friends of the Earth.

Interestingly, the survey also found 71% of homeowners said they would consider installing green energy systems if they were paid enough cash.

Friends of the Earth say the Government will publish details of its feed-in tariff proposals, or clean energy cash-back, which aim to encourage small-scale renewable energy systems by paying them at a premium rate for all the green electricity they generate in the next few days.

The survey of more than 2,000 people conducted last week strongly supports the call for a more ambitious feed-in tariff.

In the poll 64% of those questioned agreed Government ambitions to supply 2% of British electricity from its feed-in tariff scheme are not ambitious enough.

It also found 70% would be prepared to pay an extra 10p on their electricity bills each month to help the Government introduce a more ambitious scheme from the outset.

As well as 71% of home-owners who said they would consider fitting micro-generation schemes if feed-in tariffs were generous enough.

Friends of the Earth’s executive director, Andy Atkins, said: “The public overwhelmingly wants the Government to think big when it comes to small-scale renewable energy.

“Our homes, businesses and communities could become green power stations – but bigger Government incentives are needed to make this a reality.

“Ministers must listen and introduce an ambitious feed-in tariff scheme that will encourage millions of households, companies and communities across the UK to join the green energy revolution.”

Solarcentury executive chairman and green jobs campaigner, Jeremy Leggett, praised the poll and called on the government to listen.

He said: “The new government scheme could yet deliver literally hundreds of thousands of jobs in solar and other small-scale renewables.”

Luke Walsh

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