Ed Davey attacks Tories on onshore wind

Energy Secretary Ed Davey has claimed Conservative attitudes to onshore wind are putting jobs at risk in a speech to RenewableUK’s annual conference.

New figures published by RenewableUK have shown that more than 15,000 people are currently employed in the wind power industry – a 70 per cent increase since 2010. Wind power has also been found to contribute nine per cent to the UK’s electricity generation, and attracted £2.6 billion of investment in 2013-14 – nearly half of which stayed in the UK.

Conservative Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has called in more than 50 planning applications for onshore wind developments – a move that Ed Davey has suggested bordered on abusing ministerial power.

The Conservatives position on onshore wind has also faced criticism from Labour’s shadow energy minister Tom Greatrex. Polling conducted by the Department for Energy and Climate Change has found that 70 per cent of the public support onshore wind.