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A cabinet row about offshore wind threatens to destabilize the UK’s energy policy, as a new poll suggests 90 percent of Brits would be happy to live near a wind turbine.
Two ministers clashed over the approval of wind farms off the Suffolk coast, which would generate enough energy to power 1.2 million homes.
Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has to make a decision on the farms by Thursday, amid opposition from Work and Pensions Secretary, and local MP, Therese Coffey.
There is also concern from local groups due to the position of a substation near a historic medieval village, according to the Telegraph, as well as the impact of the turbines on protected bird species.
This comes as the Russian war against Ukraine forces Britain to reevaluate its energy sources. It also announced a ban on oil from Moscow by the end of 2022.
Octopus Energy Generation’s chief executive, Zoisa North-Bond, reflected on a poll released by the energy provider this week showing 87 percent of people support having a turbine in their postcode area.
The figures also show that four out of five would change their energy usage if it was cheaper at certain points of the day.
North-Bond launched Octopus Energy’s ‘fan club’, offering a local tariff to people living near wind turbines – with a discount of up to 50 percent. Her team manages three GW of renewable assets worth over £4bn.
“Building more onshore wind turbines is the cheapest, cleanest, and fastest way of creating more green power in the UK”, said Zoisa North-Bond, chief executive of Octopus Energy Generation. “If we want to become energy independent and bring down people’s energy bills … then onshore wind absolutely has to be a significant contributor”.
The data also showed people’s attitudes towards so-called NIMBYism (not in my back yard), which North-Bond said had “rapidly changed.”
There was a good response towards wind turbines “if energy can be supplied at cheaper rates”, as she claimed that thousands have got in touch with the energy company asking “to build wind turbines near them.”
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