A consortium of trade associations representing the renewables industry and related sectors have sent a joint open letter to Chancellor Rishi Sunak making the case for renewables to be embedded into the UK Government's stimulus packages to address the economic recession caused by the coronavirus outbreak, as well as the larger issue of climate change.
In the letter, the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA), the Association for Decentralised Energy (ADE), ECA, the REA, Scottish Renewables and the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF) highlight the value of scaling up the renewables industry to develop a circular economy that meets net zero targets and provides not only return on investment, but crucially, millions of jobs and energy security.
Referring to the Prime Minister's campaign to "Build Back Better", the signatories ask the Government to ensure the UK "builds back green", and urge the Chancellor to:
Choose renewables as a safer and more lucrative investment option than fossil fuels
Focus on job creation across ALL renewables and related low carbon technologies - not just solar and wind
Ensure energy security for the UK is achieved through renewables
They also call for the UK to show leadership in the lead up to the UN Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP26) in Glasgow in November 2021. With the US stepping out of the Paris Agreement and China reneging on previous green pledges, they see "an opportunity for someone else to show leadership on the green transition and give the world renewed hope" and urge "the UK Government, as the host of the next UN climate summit, COP26, to take up this role and to make the only sensible choice: a green response to COVID-19".
“Investing in renewables and circular economy technologies now is an absolute necessity to ensure we transition out of fossil fuels into green energy sources to achieve the UK's net zero targets, creating tens of thousands of green jobs in the process” said Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive of the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA). Anaerobic digestion and biogas alone can create 30,000 direct jobs and cut the UK's annual greenhouse gases emissions by 6 percent by 2030 - especially in hard-to-decarbonise sectors such as transport, heat and agriculture. They also support the waste management sector by recycling organic matter and turning it into green energy and biofertilisers”.
Dr Nina Skorupska CBE FEI, Chief Executive of REA, added that a Green Recovery holds enormous opportunities for the UK from economic benefits and energy security to improved health and the creation of thousands of green jobs.
“It is encouraging to see the Government acknowledge this and commit to a Green Recovery, but it is also important that we get this right from the outset” Dr Skorupska said. “This letter outlines the foundations needed to achieve a successful and inclusive Green Recovery that is in line with our existing Net Zero targets.”
For additional information:
Anaerobic Digestion & Bioresourcesd Association (ADBA)