Energy and Climate Change
Andrea Leadsom (South Northamptonshire, Conservative)
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what mechanism his Department has put in place to measure the average levels of wind in the counties of England; and what information his Department holds on the levels of wind in Northamptonshire.
Charles Hendry (Minister of State (Renewable Energy), Energy and Climate Change; Wealden, Conservative)
The Department has no mechanism to monitor the average levels of wind in the counties of England, and does not monitor wind speeds in Northamptonshire. However, DECC does produce average wind speed figures for the UK as a whole, which is based on data from 12 weather stations provided by the Met Office. This is used to help provide context to DECC's wind generation figures for the UK as a whole, rather than for use in monitoring regional wind speeds. This table can be found at:
DECC has funded a number of regional renewable and low carbon capacity assessments, including covering Northamptonshire, which will help local authorities and developers to identify areas where renewable energy development could be accommodated.
As the renewables obligation incentivises developers for actual electricity generation, it is in their best interest to bring forward projects in windiest and least constrained sites.