RenewableUK media release – Sunday 27th October 2013
An independent opinion poll commissioned by the Mail on Sunday by the company Survation showed today that 70% of people surveyed backed wind farms being built near them. Asked the question “Which of the following statements is closest to your opinion: (a) I would be happy to have a wind farm built in my local area (b) I would not be happy to have a wind farm built in my local area”, 70.1% of respondent plumped for the first option, with 29.9% saying they wouldn’t be happy. There was a clear majority in favour across the political spectrum with 60.8% of those intending to vote Conservative, 74.6% of Labour voters, 81.1% of Liberal Democrat voters, and 57.8% of those intending to vote for UKIP saying they would be happy to see wind farms near them.
The Mail on Sunday poll also asked if forced to choose between fracking and wind farms in their local area, which saw 31.9% back a fracking plant and 68.1% say they would choose wind farms. Again more voters of every political persuasion backed wind farms over fracking plants.
Separately a YouGov poll commissioned by the Sunday Times found 51% of people think that looking at future energy needs the Government is right to spend money encouraging wind compared to 32% who said that the Government shouldn’t. When asked about green levies, the largest proportion of people felt that the money should continue to be spent but should be moved into general taxation.
Welcoming today’s news RenewableUK’s Director of External Affairs, Jennifer Webber, said: “We’re pleased that a massive 7 in 10 people would welcome a wind farm near them. It goes to show that the loud opposition we sometimes hear just isn’t representative of general people’s views. This vote of support is consistent across age groups, voting intention and regions of the country. In other words for politicians no matter which party you represent, or where in the country you are, if you oppose wind you’re out of touch with your voters.
Responding to claims that polls showed voters didn’t back green levies, Webber said: “There’s a lot of confusion about what green levies represent and that makes it difficult for people to know whether they support them or not. What’s clear is when directly asking whether they favour Government spending money into the future encouraging wind, a majority of people say yes. Currently wind adds less than £20 a year to consumer bills, but we’re not taking this support for granted, and the wind industry is going to work hard over the next few years to reduce costs even further, ensuring that we have a clean, secure, affordable energy source which can provide tens of thousands of jobs in areas of the country which need them most”..
For further details, please contact:
- Jennifer Webber, Director of External Affairs 07792 463445, Jennifer.Webber@RenewableUK.com
- John Lang, Communications Officer 07791 702702 John.Lang@RenewableUK.com
- RenewableUK is the trade and professional body for the UK wind and marine renewables industries. Formed in 1978, and with over 600 corporate members, RenewableUK is the leading renewable energy trade association in the UK.
- The Survation Poll for the Daily Mail can be found here http://survation.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/MailEnergyFinal.pdf Questions on the support for local wind farms are Q26 and Q27.
- The YouGov poll for the Sunday Times can be found here http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/i2bq55ay85/YG-Archive-Pol-Sunday-Times-results-251013.pdf questions on pages 6 and 8 are referred to in this document.
- For future job predictions, please see RenewableUK’s recently published report “Working for a Green Britain and Northern Ireland 2013-2023 http://www.renewableuk.com/en/publications/reports.cfm/working-green-britain