Ernst & young’s annual Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Indices (RECAI) shows that the UK has climbed to fourth place despite warning that not enough is being done to sustain current high levels of investor activity.
The report notes that the recent government announcements relating to the country’s energy policy have done little to instill confidence in the UK’s renewable sectors. In the past three months details have been released for the proposed contracts for difference (CfD) scheme, increased powers for the Green Investment Bank (GIB) and the Energy Bill secured its passage through the House of Lords.
Ernst & Young claim the announcements were long overdue and did not give investors’ confidence in the long-term direction of policy. Ben Warren, environmental finance leader at Ernst & Young commented: “The flurry of government announcements has been welcomed with a sigh of relief by the sector and contributed to the current hiatus of activity and the UK’s improved position in our index. But, what we are witnessing is nothing more than basic, isolated measures that had been stalled for way too long.
“Much work is still needed to convert this patchwork of measures into a complete, balanced and strategic plan that will sustain activity in the long term. After a long period of silence, the government is now playing catch-up with investors who are not short of opportunities in other countries. While these announcements come as a pleasant surprise, this is no time for complacency, as important pieces of the jigsaw are still missing if we want to produce an attractive framework.”
Warren concluded: “Overall, the sector’s positive reaction to recent announcements and current high level of activity point to a liquid and buoyant renewables market. Global investors and developers, however, need more than piecemeal policy details. The government must come up with a credible and consistent energy plan that offers in a timely manner the clarity and information required to make long-term investment decisions.”