Rural areas could thrive on renewables

Rural areas could be given a financial boost by renewables, claim the advocates of a new report. Global insurer RSA released the Emerging Risks Briefing with charity WWF to look […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Rural areas could be given a financial boost by renewables, claim the advocates of a new report.

Global insurer RSA released the Emerging Risks Briefing with charity WWF to look at whether investment in renewable energy can drive economic growth.

Projects are often located in remote rural areas, many miles offshore or in desert terrain, said Mark Potter, Head of Renewable Energy at RSA, which creates a huge opportunity for employment in local economies.

Mr Potter said: “This type and scale of investment can transform previously declining industrial areas into thriving renewable support centres.”

Welcoming the report, Laura Sandys, MP for South Thanet said the wider socio-economic perks were already evident near her constituency, “particularly in areas such as East Kent which has already benefitted from investment in this sector.”

Such investment relies on investor confidence, the briefing concludes, adding that clear financial incentives from the government are essential.

A spokesperson from Department of Energy and Climate Change told ELN that legislation in the Electricity Market Reform and the Renewables Obligation, as well as the Green Deal were designed to help this, adding: “We are focused on getting the investment we need in the next ten years and to make the investment as affordable as possible.”