Reacting to the publication of the National Audit Office report “Early Contacts for Renewable Electricity”, RenewableUK’s Deputy Chief Executive Maf Smith said:
“The NAO acknowledges that the awarding of Contracts for Difference under the FID-ER scheme created more certainty. Increased certainty brings costs down and helps establish an offshore wind supply chain in the UK.
“It’s important to note that the FID-ER strike prices were only established after a long consultation process, and that offshore wind, as a less-established technology would not be going to straight into an auction process, so it’s difficult to see that the government would have been able to secure the amount of power needed at a lower price.
“To meet our 2020 renewable energy target, we need to ensure that more capacity is built out”.
“After a painstaking and rigorous period of assessment, DECC offered Contracts for Difference to 5 offshore wind farms at a crucial time, with the entire energy sector undergoing major changes as a result of Electricity Market Reform. This gave developers the confidence to go ahead with major green energy infrastructure projects. Without the FID-ER, there would have been a genuine risk of investment slowing down.
“Overall, the process has helped to stimulate commitments to the UK by manufacturers such as Siemens which will be creating 1,000 jobs in offshore wind in East Yorkshire.
“More than 13,000 people in the UK already owe their livelihood to the offshore wind sector, which has the potential to employ nearly 45,000 by 2023. These 5 offshore wind projects, with a combined capacity of over 3,000 megawatts, will help to provide energy security for the UK by powering more than 2 million homes.”
Pictured is Maf Smith, Deputy Chief Executive at RenewableUK