‘Executive must do more to help grow renewable energy sector’ – Clarke

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Monday, August 12th, 2013
Alliance South Down Spokesperson Patrick Clarke has said the Executive must do more to help grow the renewable energy sector. His comments follow the announcement by Evermore Renewable Energy that they have secured £81million to build a biomass fueled power plant at Lisahally. The plant will power 25,000 homes and will increase the amount of renewable energy produced in Northern Ireland by 10%. It will become fully operational by 2015. Clarke said, “There is a lot of potential for renewable energy production in Northern Ireland, from wind, tidal, wave and biomass sources. While I welcome the announcement of this new biomass fuelled power plant, I believe that there is much more that the Executive could do to support this sector. “The Scottish Government have realised the environmental and economic benefits of embracing green energy. In 2011, 35% of their electricity came from renewable energy sources and over 11,000 people were employed in this sector. “We must see similar support from our Executive if we are to meet our target of 40% of our electricity being sourced from renewable energy by 2020. Clarke added, “As we import around 99% of our fuel requirements, we are very susceptible to volatile price changes. If the Executive gets serious about renewable energy, we can become less dependent on fossil fuels and the vagaries of world oil markets.”
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