UK urged to set renewable energy targets for 2030 – reNews


RenewableUK urges the UK government to commit to a specific deployment target for onshore wind of 30 GW by 2030 ahead of COP26 in November.

In ‘Raising the bar: key energy commitments the UK should make ahead of COP26,’ the association said the Prime Minister’s new target of cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 and Achieving net zero emissions by 2050 can only be achieved by setting clear milestones to be achieved by 2030.

It details the economic opportunities in the development of renewable energy in the UK and the ‘international significance’ of the UK clarifying its clean energy goals ahead of COP26.

RenewableUK is urging the newly elected governments of Scotland and Wales to set complementary onshore wind targets for 2030 to support an overall ambition of 30 GW for the UK.

Most future projects will be located in Scotland and Wales, so both governments have “a vital role to play in encouraging other countries around the world to use their vast wind resources ahead of COP26”, said the commercial body.

Besides building new projects, the report highlights the need for policies that allow developers to get the most out of existing wind farms by re-powering old turbines with modern technology.

The government has already set a target of 1 GW of floating wind power by 2030 – but the industry wants to aim higher and double that number within that time frame to reach 2 GW, the report says.

The report found that the UK was already one step ahead in the global race to increase renewable hydrogen production, with trials underway such as the Gigastack project in the Humber and manufacturers of “world class” electrolysers like ITM Power.

RenewableUK urged ministers to set a minimum target of 5 GW of green hydrogen electrolysis capacity by 2030.

“This will help provide clean fuel for sectors that have proven difficult to decarbonize so far, such as shipping and heating for heavy industry,” he said.

The report also calls on the government to set a target of 1 GW for marine energy. Through learning, innovation and economies of scale

comes with the deployment of new projects, studies suggest that after developing 1 GW of marine power, the cost of the technology will drop to the level of other common forms of low-carbon production such as nuclear power.

To stimulate investment and development, marine energy needs a revenue support mechanism and ministers are considering ways to ensure that future CfD auctions support the development of marine technologies.

RenewableUK said it supports this and also recommends additional measures to support private sector investment in marine energy to accelerate the growth of the sector.

RenewableUK, Head of Public Affairs Nathan Bennett (Photo) said: “The UK has one of the best decarbonization records in the world.

“But to achieve net zero emissions as quickly as possible and ensure that we maximize jobs and investment, the government needs to establish a detailed roadmap with specific milestones for the key renewable technologies that will get us there – starting with goals for 2030..

“We have to ensure that there are no gaps in our own ambitions if we are to set the agenda for the rest of the world.”

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