UK on course to hit 2020 green energy targets

Posted Dec 31, 2012 by Paris Franz
A report from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) confirms that the UK is on track to meet its 2020 renewable energy targets, thanks principally to new solar and offshore wind projects.
Wikimedia Commons
The latest Renewable Energy Roadmap status report from the DECC, published on 27 December 2012, records a number of milestones during the period from July 2011 to June 2012. Renewable power output grew 27 percent, while overall, renewable energy accounted for over 10 percent of total electricity. There was a 60 percent increase in offshore wind capacity, and a five-fold increase in solar photovoltaic capacity.
Energy Secretary Edward Davey said in the accompanying statement:
“Renewable energy is increasingly powering the UK’s grid, and the economy too. It’s a fantastic achievement that more than 10 percent of our power now comes from renewables, given the point from which we started.”
The Roadmap shows the UK is on track to meeting its first interim target on the way to the Europe-wide target of sourcing 15 percent of all energy from renewable sources by 2020.
Reuters reports the DECC expects the growth in renewables to continue, and predicts the industry will support 400,000 direct jobs by 2020, up from around 110,000 jobs currently.
The difficulties of the wider economy have placed pressure on support schemes funded by the government. However, while government departments have reined in spending, falling costs of the technology mean that less support is needed to encourage take-up.
“It’s right to note that costs are falling steadily, so renewables will continue to offer even better value for money for all of us,” said Maf Smith, Deputy Chief Executive of RenewableUK. "This will help to stabilise the price of energy, providing a secure alternative to importing expensive fossil fuels."