Industry players in London say more investment is needed for wind power.
A more supportive market and financial incentives from government could help spur new projects by renewable companies, announced Sam Laidlaw, chief executive of Centrica PLC.
He said that in order to meet the United Kingdom’s ambitious renewable targets, new wind farms will be necessary, but the incentives just aren’t there.
There are currently plans in the United Kingdom to build 33 gigawatts of offshore wind farms by 2020, which would boost U.K. capacity to 40 gigawatts. However, it costs more than $2 billion per gigawatt of capacity to build, Laidlaw said, and companies need assistance.
“To reach the new EU targets it is vital that there is a supportive market and a planning framework in place that incentivizes energy companies to build these offshore wind farms,” Laidlaw said.
Centrica has already pulled out of one large U.K. energy project over planning delays, and more may follow as the cost projections continue to drastically increase.
“We’ve got plans to build another 1.5 gigawatt of capacity mainly offshore, but the cost of this has risen sharply,” Laidlaw said. “Renewables will become a bigger spend, though not in the billions. This is going to be a balance of continuing to invest in new sources of gas, building out renewables and also looking at new nuclear which has an important role to play in the longer term.”
22 February 2008
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