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The British public backs the construction and use of new buildings with overwhelming support wind farmsAccording to a poll, the country is more hostile to non-renewable sources of energy.
The survey, released as the world’s governments meet for the Cop27At the climate summit in Egypt, 74% of respondents support building more wind farm, which includes 72% of Conservative voters.
Rishi Sunak this week indicated he would keep in place the government’s ban on new onshore wind farms – ditching a promise by Liz TrussAllow new green power installations
The U-turn comes despite overwhelming support for renewables and the prime minister telling Cop27 that such energy sources were needed to “insure ourselves against the risks of energy dependency” and would unlock “new jobs and growth”.
Pollster Opinium interviewed a representative sample British adults and asked them whether they were supportive of investment in renewable energy sources. The results showed that 51% of respondents strongly supported wind farms, 23% were somewhat in favor, and only 2 percent strongly opposed.
This poll found that a majority of voters supported nuclear power stations with 45% of those surveyed agreeing and 21% disagree.
However, the majority of people opposed dirty fossil fuels. Only 29 percent of the public supported investment in gas power stations, compared to 30 percent who were opposed. Coal power stations were supported by only 23 percent and 43% respectively.
Helena Bennett, head of climate policy at Green Alliance, said the survey showed there was “huge public support across the UK for unleashing onshore wind power”.
“As a windy island nation, it’s time the government made the most of this abundant natural resource to help lower people’s energy bills for good and slash demand for imported gas,” she added.
Tim Crosland, director of the campaign group Plan-B, added the results showed there was “no political mandate” for the government to block the development of renewable energy sources.
Jennifer Nadel, codirector of Compassion in Politics (which commissioned the poll), said that the government should follow public opinion.
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“Aware of the scale of the environmental and energy crisis we face, the public expects our government to act with urgency to generate energy that is safe, clean, and independent,” she said.
“As an island, we are uniquely placed to take advantage of this clean, free, and green source of energy. The prime minister must reverse his ban on onshore wind farms, keep fossil fuels in the ground, and invest in the technologies that will secure our future existence.”
2015: Former prime minister David CameronStrict planning guidelines were established that effectively stopped any onshore wind development.
The government’s September 2022 Growth Plan unveiled by Liz Truss promised to “unlock the potential of onshore wind by bringing consenting in line with other infrastructure”.
But when Mr Sunak was asked by Labour MP Alan Whitehead at Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday whether he would lift the ban, he said he would “stick with what’s in our manifesto”.
Opinium’s polling took place between 2 and 4 November and was sighted to be politically and nationally representative.
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