The United Kingdom is stepping up efforts to produce energy from alternative sources. This week the UK unveiled the plan to increase renewable energy incentives designed to encourage up to ?100 billion in investment from the private sector.They want to build 4,000 offshore and 3,000 onshore wind turbines. Prime Minister Gordon Brown said that this “green revolution” would result in a tenfold increase in the U.K.’s current renewable energy capacity, providing 15 percent of energy from renewable sources by 2020.
Business Secretary John Hutton said that such a large-scale increase in renewables would create 160,000 new jobs. “We will? maximize the economic benefit for the U.K. by creating a new generation of green collar jobs and making the most of our strengths as one of the world’s largest manufacturing economies; a world-class center of energy expertise and a leading location for inward investment,” he said.
They will also offer financial incentives to households and businesses that install onsite renewable energy technologies, including a tariff that would guarantee an above market price for power sold back to the grid. Also in the works, tighter restrictions on landfils to divert more waste food to biomass plants.
Dale Vince, a manager at green energy firm Ecotricity, said “We’ve had big plans before, though not this big — what we’ve always been missing is the guts to make them happen, to drive the change needed. That’s why we’ve missed targets before and why we’ll miss them again. Talk is one thing ? what we need is action.”