Public support for renewable technologies has reached record highs according to government surveys, with opposition almost completely diminishing.
The latest instalment of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s public attitudes tracker, which surveys public opinions on a variety of energy issues, found that 79% of those surveyed generally supported renewable energy.
While this figure was predominantly in line with previous results, opposition to renewables has nearly completely diminished with just 4% of those surveyed expressing opposition to them.
Just 1% – equivalent to around 20 of the 2,180 surveyed – said they were strongly opposed to renewable energy.
This was also compounded by responses to other questions asked in this edition of the survey. More than 70% of respondents said they were concerned by climate change, with two-thirds expressing concern that the UK was not investing in alternative energy sources quickly enough.
Juliet Davenport, chief executive of clean energy utility Good Energy, said: “It’s fantastic to see that all renewable technologies, including on-shore wind and solar, have reached their highest level of support from the British public and that well over half would also support a new large-scale renewable project where they live.
“This survey is a clear message to any new government that climate change is a prime concern among the electorate and that they should listen to public opinion, champion renewable energy and make the UK a world leader in clean, green technology.”
Meanwhile Jonathan Marshall, energy analyst at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, focused on the disparity between public concerns over a lack of clean investment, the impacts of climate change and rising energy bills, and recent government policy.
“Despite the government promising action on energy bills, the levels of concern are largely unchanged over the past two years, contrary to rising support for the development of low-carbon electricity generation, which is seen as a higher priority within society.
“As such, moves by the next government to continue backing wind and solar power in the UK would clearly be in line with public sentiment, offering a prime opportunity to ensure that a steady source of low-carbon power is at the centre of the soon-to-be-revealed industrial strategy,” he said.