UK presses ahead with onshore curb

UK: The UK's new energy minister has said her department is pushing ahead with the manifesto pledge to end support for onshore wind projects and change the planning laws.

Amber Rudd is the UK's new senior energy minister

In an interview with the Sunday Times newspaper, Amber Rudd said the legislation to cut onshore subsidies would be in the Queen's Speech to parliament next week. The speech outlines what the government intends to achieve over the next parliament session.

Rudd said she is "hopeful" the new laws will be in place by the middle of next year. It would end support for all new projects.

The legislation will also include changes to planning laws to give local residents more influence on planning decisions. The change would give the final approval for projects to local planning authorities, which take into account local residents' views. According to the Sunday Times, at present, a central infrastructure body handles applications.

The new energy minister said she thought turbines were not "an eyesore at all. I personally enjoy seeing them." However she said: "We can't have them on a scale in areas where people do not want them."

In the same interview, Rudd said she hoped to push the shale gas industry forward "in a safe but beneficial way".