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Renewable Energy: South West

Volume 482: debated on Wednesday 5 November 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many jobs have been created in the renewable energy sector in the South West region in each of the last five years. (230832)

The Department does not collect annual data on job creation in the renewable energy sector at the regional level.

Surveys were, however, carried out by DTZ in 2005 and 2008 on behalf of Regen SW and the results published in ‘The Economic Contribution of the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Sector in the South West of England’. According to the surveys, 1,140 direct jobs (FTEs) were reported in 2005. The April 2008 survey reported 2,900 jobs.

The 2008 report can be downloaded from:

http://www.regensw.co.uk/downloads/RegenSW_149pdf#search=“economic%20contribution”.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what steps the Government are taking to ensure that the South West region attains its target of generating 15 to 20 per cent. of its energy needs through renewable sources by 2020. (230835)

The Government's climate change supplement to Planning Policy Statement (PPS) 1—Delivering Sustainable Development expects regional planning bodies to set regional targets for renewable energy generation in line with PPS22—Renewable Energy, and to

‘ensure their ambition fully reflects opportunities in the region, are consistent with the Government's national targets and, where appropriate in the light of delivery, are periodically revised upwards'.

The Government previously had a UK-wide target of 10 per cent. renewable electricity by 2010, and an aspiration to double this by 2020. It is likely that the UK will be set a target of 15 per cent. renewable energy (i.e. heat, transport and electricity) by 2020 as our share of the EU target to produce 20 per cent. of the EU's energy from renewable sources in 2020. We would expect the UK's share of the target to be translated into local/regional policies when it has been agreed.