The report from the right wing Adam Smith Institute Renewable Energy: Vision or Mirage? is published today (November 12).

The report has been criticised by the renewables industry as the ‘same little clique of people repeating the same tired old arguments’.

According to the report the government’s focus on renewable energy sources is misguided and unrealistic.

As these technologies cannot provide the secure energy supply the country needs and could potentially lead to an energy crisis by the middle of this decade.

The report concludes the ‘official enthusiasm’ for renewables has more to do with the ‘power of the green lobby’.

Joint author Martin Livermore: said: “For too long, we have been told heavy investment in uneconomic renewable energy was not only necessary but would provide a secure future electricity supply.

“The facts actually show that current renewables technologies are incapable of making a major contribution to energy security and – despite claims to the contrary – have only limited potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

“It seems ministers have not yet realised the need to invest in more nuclear and gas generating capacity if the electorate is not to be badly let down.”

RenewableUK director of policy, Dr Gordon Edge, said the report missed the fact the wind industry alone has installed enough turbines to provide clean electricity to more than 3,200,000 homes in the UK, displacing more than six and a half million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year.

He also said the report claims that as renewable energy sources ‘produce power intermittently, they cannot replace gas, coal and nuclear’.

Dr Edge said: “This report is simply another example of the same little clique of people repeating the same tired old arguments against renewable energy, regardless of the facts.

“Their report cannot be seen as an impartial piece of research – it was written by anti-renewables campaigners.

“Astonishingly, they seem to be suggesting we should generate electricity by importing vast quantities of expensive fossil fuels from abroad, rather than utilising a free low carbon source – wind – which is abundant throughout the UK, onshore and offshore.

“We will continue to forge ahead with the successful deployment of wind energy.”

Luke Walsh

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