The UK Chancellor George Osborne should be at the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) summit in London this week, says the Renewable Energy Association (REA).
The call comes as the UK is officially back in recession. But renewables, says the REA, is bucking the trend with average growth in the UK of 11% from 2009-2010.
In the US, the sector grew 27% between 2009 and 2011, while India is enjoying the highest growth rates, which topped 52% in 2011.
“The [UK] Treasury has been marginalising renewable energy, but evidence in the UK and from around the world shows renewable energy should be at the heart of government’s growth strategy,” says REA chief executive Gaynor Hartnell.
The REA wants to see the Chancellor at the CEM, which starts today in the capital, putting the UK at the forefront of the emerging sector.
“The potential for renewable energy to stimulate much needed growth and employment is understood by the major economies attending this important event today. The UK should be taking this major economic opportunity every bit as seriously,” says Hartnell.
Recent figures indicate that the UK is trailing behind its European and international neighbours in renewables investment. According to the Pew Charitable Trusts’ recent report, Germany invested $30.6 billion in 2011 and Italy $28 billion to the UK’s $9.4 billion.
Prime Minister David Cameron is expected to address the summit this week, but is not any longer – according to media reports – planning a major ‘green’ statement.
The CEM is being chaired jointly by UK Energy Secretary Ed Davey and his US counterpart Steven Chu.
For further information:
UK government wastes no time investing £80 million in green fund (25-Apr)
UK renewables sector could support 400,000 jobs by 2020 (24-Apr)
UK and US to focus on accelerating development of floating wind turbines (23-Apr)
Global clean energy investment up 6.5% led by the US (12-Apr)
25 April 2012