Modern society is built around the secure and affordable supply of energy. Since the first wave of the industrial revolution started in the Heads of the Valleys in Wales two and a half centuries ago, the world has become increasingly reliant on the burning of fossil fuels to power our economies and societies.
As concerns about rising fossil fuel prices, energy security, and climate change increase, renewable energy can play a key role in producing local, clean, and inexhaustible energy to supply the UK’s growing demand. Because there are little or no fuel costs associated with generating electricity from renewable sources, we need to increasingly look towards resources like wind, solar, hydropower, tides, waves and biomass to hedge against the price volatility of gas/oil and threatened security of supply. Producing our own energy from renewable resources reduces reliance on importing fuel from other countries.
The UK and Wales has signed up to the 2020 EU target of 20% of energy requirements (electricity, heat and vehicle fuels) coming from renewable source. With some of the best renewable energy resources in Europe, Wales has an opportunity to be a leader in their development and bring new revenue streams into the Welsh economy, just as in the past Wales benefited from, and led the world, in using our coal reserves.