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England set to miss 2010 targets for electricity from renewables

For Croner Publications Ltd, Facilities Management News Online, July 2009

According to a new report from the British Wind Energy Association (BWEA), England is set to completely miss its target of generating 10 per cent of electricity from renewables by 2010.

The new report, ‘England’s Regional Renewable Energy Targets: Progress Report’ states that across England an average of 50 per cent of the renewable electricity generation will be met, with some regions such as the South West failing to achieve even a third of this.

By contrast, Scotland and Northern Ireland are set to exceed their targets.

The report reveals that delays in the planning system in England and Wales are holding up wind farm planning applications for an average of 14 months, when the statutory guideline is 16 weeks.

The 2010 targets set by each regional planning authority are voluntary compared to the EU wide 2020 targets which are binding. Later this week the Government will publish its ‘Renewable Energy Strategy’ which will set out how the UK aims to achieve its 2020 targets.

Said BWEA Chief Executive, Maria McCaffery, “If we want to use 2010 as a dry run for 2020, timeliness and political initiative would be the two key lessons we should implement.”

She adds, “ A clear schedule of implementation backed by central Government, with a system of checks and balances as we approach 2020, will be crucial if we want to join the renewable energy revolution, and not be laggards in Europe.”

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