United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Wind wire: Conservative party rift

A rift emerged within the UK's opposition centre-right Conservative Party - which is widely expected to win power next year - after its business spokesman said all wind farms should be built offshore.

Bucking an official Conservative policy that both onshore and offshore should play central roles in the UK's pursuit of renewable energy, Ken Clarke reportedly told a conference by centre-right think tank Policy Exchange that the UK is "not suitable" for hosting wind farms on land. "My view is that those few wild and open spaces that we have left in Britain should not be used for wind turbines," a UK newspaper reported Clarke as saying. Clarke back-peddled after an apparent rebuke from within his party, saying his remarks were spontaneous and did not represent official party policy. UK shadow energy and climate-change secretary Greg Clark says: "When it comes to wind, onshore wind has its place as well as offshore." The Conservatives are 13 percentage points ahead of the incumbent Labour Party. A general election must be held by June 3, 2010.

 

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