Action on Climate Emergency (ACE) Settle and area met with local MP Julian Smith (pictured with Sarah Wiltshire and Barry White) on 7 October, to discuss the work of its energy group. This includes plans to develop more renewable energy locally to provide energy security and to reduce household bills. At the meeting ACE Co-ordinator Sarah Wiltshire spoke of the importance of being able to include small and medium scale onshore wind to balance out the daily and seasonal fluctuations of other technologies, such as solar and hydro.
The government’s new ‘Growth Strategy’ announced on 23rd September, if implemented, is set to bring “onshore wind planning policy in line with other infrastructure to allow it to be deployed more easily in England”. Regardless of the near term future of onshore wind, Mr Smith indicated that the group should press ahead with its plans and to let policy catch-up rather than slow implementation and to ensure that proposals were of sufficient scale to attract financing.
In addition Barry White drew Mr. Smith’s attention to the need to get the government to allow local energy co-operatives and not-for-profit companies to become local energy suppliers, proposals that were contained the Local Electricity Bill, a private members bill, which is unlikely to become law.
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Photo: Tim Smith.