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Renewables attract £2.5bn in investments so far this financial year

03 January 2012

Chris Huhne (pictured) has revealed more evidence of the economic benefits of renewable energy as he reaffirmed the coalition’s commitment to meeting EU renewable energy targets. Latest research from DECC shows that, so far this financial year, companies have announced plans for almost £2.5bn worth of investment in renewable energy projects in the UK, with the potential to create almost 12,000 jobs across the country.

Chris Huhne
Chris Huhne

A separate report to the European Commission on renewable energy progress showed that the UK:

- Achieved a 27% increase in renewable energy consumption from 42.6TWh in 2008 to 54TWh in 2010 - representing 3.3% of total energy consumed.
- Increased wind generation by 46% from 7TWh in 2008 to 10.2TWh in 2010, and in 2010 achieved 5GW of offshore and onshore wind capacity; and
- Saw a threefold increase in the use of biofuels in transport from 1% of total road transport fuel supply in 2007/8 to 3.33% in 2010.

Chris Huhne, Energy Secretary, said: “Renewable energy is not just helping us increase our energy security and reduce our emissions. It is supporting jobs and growth across the country, and giving traditional industrial heartlands the opportunity to thrive again. Our renewable target is less demanding than other EU member states, but the effect is bringing real jobs and investment. I do not want the UK to be left behind by turning our back on the green economy. The agreement to negotiate a global deal secured at Durban has reinforced major nations’ commitment to cutting carbon. We cannot afford to stand alone while the world wises up.”

Meanwhile, Energy Minister Charles Hendry has awarded 46 new licences to explore for hydrocarbons in the North Sea. These awards were made as part of the 26th offshore oil and gas licensing round, which was originally announced in October 2010. This licensing round awarded 144 licences but held back a number of blocks from award due to the need for further assessment on Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and Special Protection Areas (SPAs).

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