Thursday 5 January 2017

UK renewables investment ‘to fall 95% in three years’

UK renewables investment ‘to fall 95% in three years’

The UK saw a £1.1 billion fall in investment in renewable energy projects in the past six months.

That’s according to new analysis from Green Alliance, which claims investment in wind, solar, biomass and waste to energy projects will decline by 95% between 2017 and 2020.

It warns the “cliff edge” needs to be avoided if the UK is to meet its carbon budgets and Paris climate pledge.

The government committed to cutting carbon emissions by 57% by 2030 shortly after the EU referendum last year.

The report also looks into private low carbon investment and found it peaks in 2017 before falling back “due primarily to a lack of low carbon policy in the early 2020s”.

However it shows divestment of high carbon assets can be matched by investment in low carbon ones, “with the right policy environment”.

Last year the government ended subsidies for onshore wind farms.

Dustin Benton, Acting Deputy Director at Green Alliance said: “Renewables will be cheaper than new fossil power stations by 2025 at the latest if we allow companies to build, learn and cut their costs. But the government has been holding back the final bit of support needed to make renewables subsidy free. It’s also blocked the cheapest renewables from being built. Unsurprisingly, the result is a 95% fall in investment.”

The analysis, for first time since 2012, found investment in high carbon infrastructure, i.e. fossil fuel power stations, airports and road building, stopped growing and is expected to be down by two-thirds by 2020.

It adds low carbon transport spending has risen by £2.3 billion since spring 2016.

“This appears to be down to local authorities choosing to spend transport funds on bus and light rail as well as cycling and walking”, it states.

Written by

Bruna Pinhoni

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