United Kingdom

United Kingdom

Offshore wind is UK public's favourite energy option

68% support "wind farms off the coast"

Construction of offshore wind farms is the UK public’s preferred electricity generation option, according to a poll commissioned by EDF and conducted by YouGov.

More than two-thirds (68%) of 4,000-odd UK adults said they support the construction of "wind farms off the coast" as part of efforts to ensure the country generates sufficient electricity once aging coal-fired and nuclear power stations are decommissioned.

No other type of electricity generation won such a high level of support from the respondents, although onshore wind farms came second, with 57% supporting their construction.

Just 13% of respondents said they oppose offshore wind farms, a smaller proportion than those who oppose any other option. Opposition to onshore wind farms came in at 21%, while opposition to nuclear was at a very similar level, at 22%.

EDF’s poll results will soon be complemented by the conclusions of another survey, commissioned by the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc). In mid-June, secretary of state, Ed Davey, referred to the Decc survey results, stating that "the truth is that most people support renewable energy, even if it’s large scale, even if it’s to be built near them. There is a quiet majority out there".

He added that "three-quarters of us support offshore wind; just 7% oppose it."

Windpower Offshore understands that Decc plans to release results of its poll soon, though a publication date has yet to be confirmed. Although EDF is active in the offshore wind market, particularly in France where it is developing three of France's four initial projects (Windpower Offshore 11-Jun-12), its focus in the UK is on new nuclear.

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