03/09/2009

Wind Is 'Foundation' Of Renewable Sector

Wind energy could form the bedrock for achieving Northern Ireland's renewable energy targets, the Environment Minister has said.

Speaker at the Irish Wind Energy Association Workshop in Belfast, Edwin Poots reaffirmed his support for the wind industry and all other renewable energy technologies.

The Minister said his Department has a pivotal role to play in facilitating the deployment of renewable electricity generation necessary for Northern Ireland to meet challenging renewable energy targets.

"I am fully aware that more needs to be achieved over the next 10 years if we are to meet the 40% target of electricity generation from renewable sources by 2020 set out in the Draft Strategic Energy Framework," he said.
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"While other renewable energy technologies will play an increasingly important role, I believe it is the mature technology of wind energy that will provide the most significant contribution toward the achievement of this target."

The Minister explained to delegates that his Department’s new planning policy for renewable energy, PPS18, was designed to assist the growth of the overall renewable sector.

He explained: "I believe firmly that PPS 18 strikes the right balance between protection of our valuable natural heritage and preservation of the amenity of rural dwellers, whilst at the same time ensuring that the necessary renewable energy infrastructure is put in place to allow us to meet our renewable energy targets."

(PR/KMcA)

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