Green energy projects will cost every family £600 a year leading to a public revolt, it was warned yesterday.
The cost of hitting EU targets on green energy is likely to be more than £16billion a year by 2020, which will send the cost of living soaring.
According to the Renewable Energy Foundation, the cost includes subsidies for wind farms and nuclear power, improvements to the National Grid and VAT on green costs.
The green energy drive has already cost consumers £10billion since it was launched in 2002 and will eventually result in a total bill of £150billion.
But the cost for businesses will be even higher and it is estimated that energy bills for firms will be twice as much as they are now by 2030. Costs will be passed down to consumers who will be left at least £600 a year worse off, with household bills a third higher than they are now.
Foundation director Dr John Constable told a scientific conference i n Edinburgh t hat t he subsidies are likely to cause a dramatic decline in living standards which will be felt for years to come.
He said: ‘We were told these subsidies were brought in to protect the consumer from the volatility of future prices for fossil fuels.
‘But £150billion – what sort of protection is that? They have already cost us £10billion and bills will be even higher by 2020.
‘It will hit consumers hard and will eventually lead to a revolt to demand the Government stop. This will have devastating consequences on the wealth of the UK.’
Dr Constable was addressing the launch of Scientific Alliance Scotland, which is a group of scientists who want policymakers to use facts in shaping policy.
The SNP has pledged that 100 per cent of Scotland’s electricity will come from green energy by 2020.
But Scientific Alliance Scotland claims the targets rely on a ‘ridiculous’ level of subsidies that Scotland simply cannot afford under independence.
And the ‘hopelessly ambitious’ targets make absolutely no sense for the consumer, who will be left to pick up the bill for billions paid out in subsidies.
First Minister Alex Salmond has overseen a relentless march of wind farms across the countryside and believes Scotland will be able to sell ‘green’ energy.
Ministers insist our more blustery weather will help turn us into the ‘green powerhouse of Europe’.
But the policy has been branded a ‘fantasy’ after figures revealed wind turbines in Scotland are the most inefficient in Britain. There have also been warnings that SNP plans to export power generated by wind farms is destined to fail because other countries can provide cheaper energy.
Onshore wind power costs around £187 per megawatt-hour, compared with £60 per Mwh for conventional forms of energy.
Professor Jack Ponton, a former vice-president of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, said that France has cheaper nuclear energy it can export, while Norway sells low-cost hydro power to Sweden, Denmark and Germany.
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