16 March 2020
Renewable energy planning applications reaches four-year high
Analysis of Government data by the energy consultancy PX Group has found that the number of new renewable energy projects applying for planning permission has reached a four-year high in the UK. As reported by Futurebuild in their article, 269 planning applications were made in 2019 for new wind, solar and bioenergy projects, up from 204 in 2018 and a significant increase from the 154 submissions that were made in 2016. Lower technology costs and increased appetite from energy companies were attributed to the increase, in addition to greater support from financiers who view renewable energy as a lucrative investment.
Planning submissions for clean energy projects are expected to rise over the next few years, following the removal of the block for subsidies on onshore wind projects adopted in 2016 under the Government of David Cameron. Now with its removal, from 2021 onshore wind projects will be able to compete alongside other renewable projects for Government subsidies.
At IMS we consider the increase to be a reassuring trend toward a greener electricity market with more than a third of British electricity being generated by renewables in 2019 and goals for nearly half of UK electricity to be from renewable sources by 2025. However, whilst dramatic improvements in the electricity market have been made, the UK is not on track to meet carbon targets set for 2023-2027 and more will need to be done in the areas of transport and heating to bring us back on track to reach net zero by 2050.