Briefing 1613: Renewable Energy

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Year of Publication2012

Planning issues are still one of the biggest obstacles to investment in renewable energy in the UK. Engagement with local communities is advocated at all stages throughout the planning process. Confidence in the government’s support for such green energy is dwindling, influenced by factors such as the reduction in FiTs levels and retrospective policy decisions moving the goal-posts. Income returns within the sector are dependent on policy changes as much as the numbers involved. Supply chain marketability can be improved through the use of ‘greener’ produce, and certain forms of renewable such as AD are now being seen as waste management tool as well as for energy production. A review of energy usage on farm is recommended in the first instance, and if then investing, the terms and conditions of any contract should be checked by an independent consultant and unexpected add-ons should not be underestimated. The technology risk is huge, but the sector is still in its infancy and with this comes the doubters and the trade-off is that the longer before investment, the lower the return will be.

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