Renewables generate 19 per cent of England’s electricity

Just under a fifth of England’s electricity is generated from renewable power projects, according to a new study from Regen SW.

The report – Renewable energy: A local progress report for England – is claimed to be the most detailed analysis of the progress of renewable energy in England.

England generates 54,962GWh of renewable energy from 736,998 renewable energy projects but, according to Regen SW, slow progress in renewable heat means that five per cent of total energy consumption in England is met by renewables. Recent government policy changes have led to slower progress in 2016 and a poor outlook for the year ahead.

Local factors including electricity grid infrastructure and public support play a key role in renewable energy deployment. East Riding of Yorkshire is said to lead on the amount of onshore wind due to favourable resource and planning; whilst Peterborough and Mid-Devon have over 10 per cent of houses with solar PV installations due to social housing programmes, an engaged population, and active community energy groups. London is bottom of the table with three per cent of its electricity derived from renewables.

Merlin Hyman, chief executive of Regen SW said: “This decade has seen remarkable growth in renewable energy in England. This is a public policy success story – a combination of public and private investment has led to innovation and technological progress, new industries and rapidly falling costs.

“The recent government policy changes are taking the UK out of the global fast lane of renewables and the impact can already be seen on the ground. However, the global shift to a smart, decentralised and renewable energy system is now unstoppable and the leading areas of England are showing how this shift can be turned into an opportunity for businesses and local communities.

“The uneven take up of renewables across England demonstrates that a transformation in our energy system is not just about decisions in Whitehall and corporate boardrooms. Renewable energy projects happen in a place and depend on an enabling local environment and the engagement of local communities”