Clean energy companies are increasingly overlooking the UK, says our CEO in her latest article

Betsy Glasgow-Vasey - Ridge Clean Energy

Home » Clean energy companies are increasingly overlooking the UK, says our CEO in her latest article

Published: July 5, 2024

This Article was Written by: Betsy Glasgow-Vasey - Ridge Clean Energy


Writing for Business Green, Ridge Clean Energy CEO Marjorie Neasham Glasgow, voiced her concern that the UK may be missing out on investment into renewable projects and infrastructure.

Marjorie explained that even though the renewable energy industry is primed to invest billions in the UK, creating new jobs and delivering low-cost electricity, the lack of a reliable policy framework in place and a stable and predictable business environment, means the UK is not attracting that investment.

Marjorie went on to outline the three key areas the UK must prioritise to stabilise national planning policy and provide assurance to investors.

1. Clear plan to upgrade grid infrastructure so it can accommodate an increasing share of renewable energy. For example, the formation of an independent system operator is a welcome move. Marjorie also mentioned the Winser Report, which stresses the need for a system-wide mindset to the transformation of the UK grid as we revamp the grid at speed.

2. Streamline the approval processes for renewable energy projects to accelerate the deployment of renewable infrastructure. One option would be to put all renewables on an even footing when it comes to planning. Marjorie used onshore wind as an example:

“Despite being one of the cheapest energy sources in England, no new proposals for general-use windfarms were submitted for planning permission in England last year. Dated planning tests mean developers must show that the proposed project is in an area designated for renewable energy in a local plan. This overlooks the fact that currently only 11 per cent of local authorities across England have designated areas for renewable developments in their plan.”

3. National policy must acknowledge this importance of building trust with local communities. Successfully implementing and operating renewable energy projects, such as wind farms and solar panel installations, requires the use of land or resources that are integral to communities’ livelihoods and natural heritage. Developing projects in accordance with local interests leads to more sustainable and mutually beneficial outcomes.

To conclude, Marjorie outlines that “addressing regulatory inconsistencies, alongside technical advancements, will go a long way to creating a framework that appeals to investors and supports the development of the renewable energy sector in the UK.”

To read the piece in full, please click here.

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