The National Infrastructure Commission has called on ministers to aim for two thirds of electricity generated in this country to be renewable by 2030.
In a new report, the commission said a 65% target can be delivered at the same overall cost as meeting only half of total demand by that date.
The latest analysis reflects the impact of the falling cost of renewable electricity technologies and the relative speed with which they have proven to be built.
The report argues that shifts in government policy to support more renewable electricity schemes as part of a green recovery would encourage private investment to drive innovation and could help provide confidence in the economy at a crucial time, today’s report notes.
The Commission’s report notes that government has made a number of recent positive commitments on renewables deployment, including setting a goal to deliver 40 GW of offshore wind power by 2030, and schemes to encourage more onshore wind and solar power projects.
The Commission welcomes these steps and recommends that a refreshed pipeline of ‘contracts for difference’ auctions – a government guaranteed contract that offers generators a fixed revenue stream for the power it provides – should be set out to accelerate more offshore wind, onshore wind and solar power projects.
‘The government should be credited for recent steps to encourage quicker deployment of renewables, and for setting up successful mechanisms for encouraging private sector investments. These latest projections suggest we can afford to go further, faster without hitting consumers in the pocket,’ said commission chair, Sir John Armitt.
‘The National Infrastructure Strategy needs to include a long term policy on future energy that reflects these facts and helps deliver the green recovery we all want to see.’
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