Almost nine in ten people want to see the government increase the UK’s production of clean domestic energy and reduce the country’s reliance on imported gas, according to a new YouGov poll.
Currently, only 9.5% of UK electricity comes from renewable energy sources and Friends of the Earth, who had 2,884 people questioned for the survey is concerned the government’s encouragement of gas production (by exempting gas-fired power plants from emissions restrictions) is having a negative effect on the search for greener alternatives to fossil fuels.
With hostility to the locations of wind farms causing political tension concerns are mounting that renewable energy investments are being put on hold, as investors question the degree of political backing for cleaner energy.
This is why Friends of the Earth has called on the prime minister to use his speech at the Clean Energy Ministerial on Thursday 26 April to demonstrate his backing for low-carbon energy.
“The public has given a clear vote of confidence to clean British energy from our wind, sun and sea. It makes no sense for the government to pursue an unwanted, costly dash for gas that’s causing our fuel bills to rocket,” said Craig Bennett, Friends of the Earth’s director of policy and campaigns.
“David Cameron must back Britain by using his speech to kick-start a switch to clean British energy. It’s time to wave goodbye to costly fossil fuels and develop affordable power for the future.”
Friends of the Earth believe the UK’s reliance on domestic renewable sources would not only help reduce co2 emissions, but would also create new green jobs. This is backed by government figures that show that £4bn of investment in renewables last year created nearly 14,000 new jobs.
This week London is host to The Clean Energy Ministerial and Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) in which international energy ministers will set the agenda for the UN sustainable development conferences which take place later in June and decide how to deliver energy to the world’s poorest people and promote a clean energy future.