A plan to create a government office to give a leg-up to the UK’s renewables industry has been welcomed by the British Wind Energy Association (BWEA).
Secretary of State John Hutton has announced a proposed Office for Renewable Energy Deployment. The office, which should be up and running in the spring of 2009, pending the outcome of the Renewable Energy Strategy consultation, will address ‘barriers to renewables deployment including helping to develop the UK supply chain’.
Launched as part of Government’s new framework for UK manufacturers, the initiative will help UK firms take advantage of “opportunities opened up by the move towards a low carbon economy” with the express aim of helping UK’s renewables industries ‘to become world-leaders in green technologies’.
Maria McCaffery, BWEA Chief Executive said: “When it comes to R&D, the UK has been leading the world in areas such as wave and tidal, large turbine testing and small systems. But we have seen delays on deployment and this is where we hope the Government’s new initiative will make a difference. We are pleased that the Secretary of State has firmly backed a dedicated task force which will take a lead on this issue.”
However, in welcoming the initiative BWEA also pointed out that since the office will be located within the Department of Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, it could fail to address the lack of co-ordination between various Government departments including DEFRA, DCLG and the MOD, all of which have a stake in the deployment of renewables. BWEA is calling for the creation of a Government sub-committee to co-ordinate efforts to deliver the 2020 targets across all Government Departments.