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UK to miss its 2020 renewable energy target, say MPs

Staff Writer |
Britain will miss its renewable energy generation target by 2020, a committee of MPs warned.

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It said even with the Brexit vote the country is still obligated to meet the EU set targets.

Findings from a report by the Energy and Climate Change Committee showed the country will fail to meet the 15% target to source energy from renewable sources.

The 15% target comprised of 30% of electricity from wind, solar or other low-carbon methods, 12% of heat and 10% in transport fuels.

Committee chair and SNP MP, Angus MacNeil said: "The experts we spoke to were clear: the UK will miss its 2020 renewable energy targets without major policy improvements. Failing to meet these would damage the UK's reputation for climate change leadership. The government must take urgent action on heat and transport to renew its efforts on decarbonisation."

A government spokesperson said: "Renewable energy already makes up around 25% of our electricity and we're on track to hit our overall targets. The latest climate change performance index shows the UK is the second best country in the world on tackling climate change."

The targets were set by the EU, but ministers are still required to meet them despite the country voting to leave the trading block in June.

MacNeil added: "We agreed our 2020 renewable energy targets as part of the EU but they still have many merits, even as the UK government prepares for Brexit. If the UK reneges on these targets, it will undermine confidence in the government's commitment to clean energy and the climate targets agreed in Paris."

The report found that the country would meet its target for electricity if it stays on the current trajectory, but would fall short on heating and transport.

The proportion of renewable energy for transport fell from 4.93% to 4.23% between 2014 and 2015.

The renewable transport fuel obligation had been capped at 4.75% since 2013, which is below the level needed to meet the 2020 target, and the committee said this should be raised.

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