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Renewable energy suffers from lack of investment

Britain’s big energy companies are investing on average only £30 per year from each customer in renewable energy according to a study compiled for independent green power group Ecotricity. Ecotricity claims that British Gas parent company Centrica has spent £397.3m on renewables over the last five years – this might seem a lot but it is just only £13.28 per customer per year. E.ON, the German-owned group at the centre of the Kingsnorth coal-fired power station controversy, spent just £210.5m or £5.37 per. Worst of all is French group EDF which is leading the charge to build nuclear reactors in Britain. It is estimated to have invested £89.6m on renewables in this country, or £14.14 per customer. Green Energy and Good Energy are excluded from the calculations by Ecotricity as they are supply companies which do not generate power, instead buying it on the open market. Centrica hit back at the findings, saying the Ecotricity figures gave no indication about the level of future spending. Ecotricity have also said that energy regulator Ofgems’s new green tariffs, issued earlier this month, are likely to make matters worse. Ecotricity will not sign up to Ofgem’s guidelines as it predicts they will make green tariffs more confusing and expensive for consumers and will do nothing to encourage energy companies to build new renewable energy.

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