BWEA Responds to Stern’s Call for Action on Climate Change

On Monday, the British government voiced its support for renewable energy in a highly anticipated report on the economic impacts of global climate change. The report, written by former World Bank Chief Economist Sir Nicholas Stern, said that without supporting more renewable sources of energy, economic and environmental consequences around the world would be catastrophic.

The British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) welcomed the Stern Review’s message that tackling climate change is vital for the health of the world economy. In particular, BWEA strongly agrees with its conclusion that the cost of acting now is far smaller than the possible economic impact of ‘business as usual’. Wind, BWEA says, can lead the way. “The move to a low-carbon economy is as much about opportunity as cost,” said Maria McCaffery BWEA Chief Executive. “Renewable energy, and wind power in particular, can be a massive benefit to the prosperity of this country, providing secure, stably-priced energy supplies in the short term. In the future, UK companies could be generating significant export revenues in the emerging technologies of wave and tidal power. In order to achieve these results, however, the Government has to urgently show that the UK is a good place to do renewable business.” Renewable energy is one of the few supply-side options that can make a major difference to emissions in the short term, but there continue to be obstacles to its rapid growth. If delays to onshore wind development and the necessary grid infrastructure were dealt with firmly by Government now, the path would be clear to obtaining 6% of UK power from wind by 2010, and with additional action on offshore wind, approaching 15% by 2015. The British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) expanded its mission to champion the emerging technologies of wave and tidal stream power generation. Together, wind, wave and tidal power can supply 21% of UK electricity by 2020, resulting in over GBP 16 billion of investment in UK plc.
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