RenewableNI, the voice of Northern Ireland’s renewable electricity industry, welcomes the publication of the Action Plan setting out the implementation of the Energy Strategy.
Head of RenewableNI, Steven Agnew, said:
“RenewableNI members are pleased to see a commitment to a renewable electricity support scheme and the setting of annual action plans. This is crucial to allow the Strategy to be achieved on target and unlocking the £3.1bn on shore wind alone will generate for the NI Economy.
“The introduction of a renewable electricity support scheme by 2023 to bring development forward is also a positive step towards increasing the percentage of electricity from renewable sources. We can exceed the target with technologies existing in Northern Ireland.”
“At a meeting with Economy Minister, Gordon Lyons, this week I presented RenewableNI’s Powering a Green Economy report that showed how the renewable electricity industry can drive the pathway to zero carbon. This is good for consumers, the economy and the environment.
“However, I expressed concern that a poorly resourced planning system could prevent ambitions being fully realised. Renewable applications in NI typically take twice as long to progress through the planning system compared with Great Britain.
“This puts Northern Ireland at a significant competitive disadvantage and discourages investment here.
“A streamlined process for delivery of new renewable generation and energy infrastructure is essential for meeting decarbonisation ambitions.
“We have declared a climate emergency and covid has shown how fast government can move when it has to. It’s time for the same urgency on climate.”
RenewableNI is hosting a free webinar on the Energy Strategy and 2022 Action Plan on Tuesday 1 February. Find out more at https://renewableni.com/energy-strategy-webinar/
For media inquiries, please contact Judith Rance, Communications and Events Manager, RenewableNI, Judith.Rance@RenewableNI.com 44 (0)7875-681-794.
Notes to Editors
Powering a Green Economy is available at www.RenewableNI.com/policy
The report show that achieving of 2,500 MW onshore wind capacity will boost the economy with:
- a total GVA of £3.1bn;
- £195m rates contribution;
- £63m in labour income per year by 2030;
- over £31m invested in community benefit schemes.