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United Kingdom

Lobbyists draw up action plan in lead up to next general election

A new cabinet minister charged with delivering the UK's climate change program and heading a combined department of energy and environment is one of the demands of eleven renewable energy trades associations -- including the British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) -- in the lead up to the next general election. Renewables must be made a political priority say the associations, which represent over 600 companies. They will send an eight point action plan for boosting UK renewables to all political parties and calling for: 25% of electricity from renewables by 2025; policies and targets for renewable heat and transport fuels; tax breaks to promote investments in renewables; additional help for technologies like offshore wind and biomass beyond that provided by the renewables obligation; a proactive site permitting framework for renewable projects; a strategic plan for grid reinforcement; and measures to support micropower technologies. The BWEA's Marcus Rand says recent progress in developing a market for onshore wind is just the tip of the renewable iceberg. "We now need to bring new renewable technologies, like wave and tidal, to commercial take off," he says. Rand was at one time employed by Greenpeace.

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