Brits pick solar as favourite energy source

Support for renewable energy is still high in the UK, according to latest government figures. DECC’s new public attitudes survey found solar is the nation’s favourite source of power, with […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Support for renewable energy is still high in the UK, according to latest government figures.

DECC’s new public attitudes survey found solar is the nation’s favourite source of power, with 80% supporting it, followed by marine energy and offshore wind – both at 73% – onshore wind (66%) and biomass (65%).

While opposition to renewables was very low at 5%, support stood at 80% and only 1% “strongly opposed”.

Leonie Greene, Head of External Affairs at the Solar Trade Association said: “No other technology empowers consumers and communities to take charge of their energy bill and act on climate change like solar power. By cutting support for solar the government is taking power away from people, organisations and communities all over the UK – and they don’t like it one bit.”

However awareness of renewable heat technologies remained low, with less than 5% of respondents saying they knew a lot about green heat systems and between half and two thirds not aware of air and ground source heat pumps and biomass boilers.

When asked about fracking, around 43% out of more than 2,000 households surveyed said they neither supported nor opposed it.

Among those that did offer an opinion, 30% opposed the extraction of shale gas while 23% supported it.

The survey also found backing for nuclear power increased slightly from 33% in June to 36% last month while a quarter of people opposed.

However support is not as high as it has been previously when it peaked at 42%.

Last week Energy Minister Andrea Leadsom insisted nuclear energy is “good value for money” and is “absolutely key” in helping the government tackle the energy trilemma.