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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Cumbria should be at centre of hydro energy industry says MP

The Government needs to focus more on hydro energy and put Cumbria at the heart of a new strategy, according to South Lakes MP Tim Farron

He has used a parliamentary question to the Department of Energy and Climate Change to press for the Government to provide financial support.

The Government should allow small hydro schemes to be installed under ‘permitted development’ rules which do not require full planning permission , with certain caveats attached for marine wildlife and biodiversity, he said.

Mr Farron has also asked for the Government to look at launching a pilot scheme with South Lakeland District Council to help the authority create green energy.

This would build on the council’s energy co-operative scheme, which has helped cut bills by up to £700 for local residents and provided funds to tackle fuel poverty.
 “We need a plan and the support of the government to make this happen – a few simple steps could make a massive difference. I think that the government, public and private sectors working together can create well paid jobs and safeguard our environment. Allowing small hydro schemes under permitted development could really help to boost a form of green energy that has strong local backing.”
“South Lakeland District Council is eager to commit to a bold plan for green energy in the South Lakes and even build some schemes themselves with the government’s support and help. I think it’s time for the talking to stop and for real action to bring a hydro renaissance to Cumbria.”

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