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Budget 2009: £1.5bn green energy boost

Chancellor Alistair Darling has promised £525M new funding for offshore wind, an extra £435M for energy efficiency in homes and building, £405M of new funding for low carbon energy and advanced green manufacturing and up to four carbon capture demonstration projects.

The plans are part of a pledge to cut carbon by 34% by 2020, in the “world’s first ever carbon budget”

“I am presenting the world’s first ever carbon budget, which commits Britain to cut carbon emission by 34 per cent by 2020,” he said. “These budgets give industry the certainty needed to developed and use low carbon technology – cutting emissions, creating new businesses and jobs.

“They are a landmark step, which point the way to the vital decisions which must be made at the Copenhagen Climate Change Summit later this year.

Darling announced £435M of extra support to deliver energy efficiency measures – for homes, businesses and public buildings.

He also pledged to build on Britain’s status as the world leader in offshore wind power generation.

“The credit squeeze is holding back major offshore wind projects.

“I want to lift the barriers – through £525m of new financial support over the next two years for off-shore wind, funded through the renewables obligation.  

“The potential is enormous. I am confident that this will lead to major projects getting the go-ahead quickly, providing enough electricity to meet the needs of up to 3m households,” he said.

He also said that renewable and other energy projects in the UK stand to benefit from up to £4bn of new capital from the European Investment Bank.

Coal, oil and gas will continue to be a major source of energy for the foreseeable future, he said, adding that clean technologies, such as Carbon Capture and Storage, are vital to ensure the UK can produce power from these sources without damaging the environment.

“I am determined that this country’s research and technological expertise is used to make us world-leaders in this area too.

“So I can announce that a new funding mechanism will be used to finance at least two, and up to four, demonstration projects.

He also said that encourage Combined Heat and Power technology, projects will be exempted from the Climate Change Levy from 2013 – bringing forward over £2.5 billion in investment.

Finally, he said that there will be £405M of new funding for low carbon energy and advanced green manufacturing in Britain – to drive the application of new technology and invest in small scale projects.

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