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Limited National Grid threatens renewables

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EFFORTS TO increase renewable energy capacity are being undermined by a continued failure to extend the National Grid to remote areas, renewables firms said this week.

They said lack of infrastructure investment was putting companies off investment in renewables development.

Concerns about infrastructure investment were voiced following publication of an International Energy Agency (IEA) paper last week.

This says Britain lags behind other countries' spending on energy research, development and deployment.

Germany's total spend in 2004 was more than . ve times that of the UK. Over the same period, Switzerland's per capita spend was almost 13 times that of the UK.

Managing director of power infrastructure contractor The Engineering Business, Tony Trapp, said further work and investment in power cable projects would stimulate Britain's renewables market.

Energy infrastructure links to remote sites would encourage development of new offshore wind turbines, he said.

Over the last 30 years the Department for Trade & Industry spent £400M or 4.7% of its energy research budget on renewables.

This compares with Germany where £511M was spent over the last 10 years.

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