These were some of the key findings of a new survey by Triodos Bank UK and Thrive Renewables. The survey was conducted earlier this year among 1,000 retail investors and the results were published today (September 14).
The vast majority of investors surveyed (81%) said they are concerned about the energy crisis and believe it will have a long-term impact on the UK economy. The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has stated that natural gas is likely to remain at least three times the pre-February 2022 average price through 2027. For the time being, government interventions will only last until October 2024 at the latest. .
Nearly six in ten investors surveyed (57%) said they want to use their own investment stocks to help ease the price shock. Investing in renewable energy was found to be a popular way to do so, with the same proportion of investors stating that they have recently increased investment here or plan to do so in the near future.
The survey revealed that most investors support a wider range of renewables than the Conservative Government, which has time and again promoted offshore wind power over other generation methods, arguing that arrays can be larger. . Offshore wind is the only renewable energy sector with a sectoral agreement in the UK and the recent Energy Security Strategy saw the Government increase targets for offshore wind, but not for solar, onshore wind, tidal or the navy.
Of those surveyed, 65% believe that investors and policy makers should do more to support the expansion of solar power in the UK. The proportion stood at 62% for offshore wind. The survey found that investors classified as “experienced,” with ten years of experience or more, were generally more supportive of onshore wind and solar power.
These findings indicate that energy investors and the new Prime Minister, Liz Truss, are likely to disagree on renewables. Truss, on the campaign trail for her, called solar farms “paraphernalia” and vowed to further restrict their development. She argued that the land should be used for crop and livestock production rather than power generation. These comments have already been criticized and countered by solar industry trade bodies and by some farmers with on-site renewables.
Thrive Renewables managing director Matthew Clayton said: “In the midst of climate breakdown and an energy crisis, it has never been more important for the UK to invest in the renewable electricity generation needed to move away from fossil fuels and meet the network in this country. -Zero carbon goals. It is clear that UK investors and the public support this and are taking matters into their own hands to invest in positive long-term solutions such as solar and wind power.”
The UK currently relies on gas for around 40% of its electricity generation. Around 85% of homes have a gas boiler and the UK is considered to have some of the least energy efficient homes in Europe. All this is a recipe for dependence on gas, which is the main cause of the price crisis. Truss is encouraged to build on her energy price freeze with energy efficiency measures and more information on the transition of heating and power stations to gas once Parliament reconvenes after the Queen’s funeral next week.
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