Offshore wind – An MP who gets it (and the big picture)

Parliament has had an, er, mixed record in the last couple of years, but don’t underestimate the less visible work of MPs. An example we loved was this week’s adjournment debate (18th March) on Transition Towns and Fossil fuels, led by Bristol West MP Thangam Debbonaire.

She has been informing herself about energy and climate issues, and it showed – with knowledgeable references to transition towns, but also to local energy co-ops, Bristol Energy Network, and the potential for wind and tidal power.

Most encouragingly, she referred to a recent meeting with energy minister Clare Perry and asked: “Will the Government commit to investing in helping emerging renewable technologies to move from the developmental stages to being fully commercially viable, with subsidies or other support, especially in industries of the future?”.

This is a clear reference to the initiative Zero West is supporting to develop floating offshore wind turbines – see our backgrounder on the project. And the Ministerial reply, while making no promises, suggested that the point is taken.

We will pursue that possibility as actively as we can. Meanwhile, the whole debate is worth reading in Hansard. Or you can watch it on CommonsTV. (23.00 start). It’s polite, articulate and, as we say, well-informed. Above all, it is intelligently concerned about the future. Just what we need to see more of in the mother of parliaments.

So congratulations to Thangam Debbonaire for proposing the debate, and we hope you enjoy meeting your new niece!

Author: Jon Turney