Deputy Prime Minister backs renewables as crucial for economy

Published:  07 November, 2013

RenewableUK has welcomed Nick Clegg's support for the green agenda today as he highlighted the benefits of the renewable energy industry in building the UK economy.

The Deputy Prime Minister was speaking at a Green Alliance Leadership Lecture this morning, the environmental think tank working to ensure UK political leaders deliver solutions to global environmental issues.

"If there was ever a time to sharpen our focus on our green commitments, it's now - the government made a commitment to the environment, and we must now stay the course,” he said.

Clegg commented on the fickle nature of those in parliament in regard to the green agenda, in particular the current debate on energy bills and green levies.

“Whenever someone tells you that we can’t afford to go green, correct them: we can’t afford not to,” he argued. “If you are for the environment, you are for cutting bills, growing our economy and creating jobs.”

RenewableUK’s director of external affairs, Jennifer Webber said: “This top-tier political endorsement is a timely reminder that green growth has a vital role to play in the UK’s economic recovery. For example, RenewableUK released new figures this week showing that the record-breaking amount of new wind energy capacity we’ve installed over the last twelve months brought £2 billion of activity to the UK’s economy. Green collar employment is an economic lifeline for UK plc. It’s good to see this being highlighted by the Deputy Prime Minister – he knows we mean business”.

Clegg also blasted Labour’s promise to temporarily freeze energy bills as a con, with energy companies bound to hike up prices both before and after, as well as a huge blow to the renewables sector.