For the last few months, 37,000 of us have been calling on the government to lift the blocks on onshore wind in England. And this week we’ve finally broken through. The government has just agreed to remove barriers for existing wind turbines - so they can rebuild when they reach the end of their lifetimes.
The government’s original plans had meant that most old turbines - which received planning permission before the ban came in - would not be replaced when they got too old. Lots of wind turbines would have been taken down and removed.
But we’ve made our voices heard and the government has changed tack. Together, we’ve helped to stop clean power dropping off our energy system - the very last thing we need as we confront climate change.
Rebuilding existing turbines across the UK would power nearly 800,000 homes, saving heaps of carbon and helping to lower energy bills.
From now on, turbines will have the chance to rebuild and upgrade without facing planning blocks.
This is a win for wind power - and the first movement we’ve seen from government on onshore wind in England since 2015. But there’s still lots more work to do. To take action on climate change, we not only need existing turbines, but new projects too.
10:10 supporters have been showing the government the benefits of onshore wind power. We’ve delivered petitions, written to ministers, challenged your MPs, and funded new research to expose just how ludicrous the ban on onshore wind is.
And the government is listening. First, climate minister Claire Perry said onshore wind should be put back on the table. Then government announced they would support the building of new projects on Scottish islands.
And now, in England - where government opposition has been strongest - they’ve backtracked on their planning ban to let existing turbines give us power in the future.
But, new wind turbines still face huge planning hurdles. So, building on this latest win, we’ll keep pushing the government to bring back new onshore wind across the UK.
We’ll produce new evidence to show decision-makers just how popular wind power is, train up new wind champions so they can change the minds of their MPs, and make sure the government hears your voices as you stand up for wind power.
Can you chip in to help us keep the pressure up?
Photo: Andy Aitchison