Lancashire and Cumbria are way ahead of other North West counties for generating renewable energy, new figures show.
In a comparison of counties’ renewable energy capacity by the environmental think tank Green Alliance, Lancashire and Cumbria vie for first place, with impressive levels of onshore wind and biomass for heat.
And, contrary to popular belief, the North West is quite sunny enough, as the study shows that all five counties have good levels of rooftop solar, with more than 60,000 households across the region boasting solar panels. Greater Manchester wins on solar capacity, with 23,484 solar roofs.
Locally, Allerdale was the top local authority, with a staggering 87% of its electricity consumption coming from renewable sources. Most of this is from onshore wind, but it is supplemented by power from biomass and waste, showing how an area’s electricity needs can be met by a diversity of renewable sources.
For the region as a whole, including its coastal waters (not included in the county or local authority rankings above) ,offshore wind is the dominant source of the North West’s renewable energy. The region currently has more than a gigawatt of offshore wind capacity installed- enough to meet the electricity needs of one million households, five times the size of Liverpool.
As a whole, renewables are generating 19% of the region’s electricity consumption. For regions in England and Wales, this puts the North West in fourth place below Yorkshire and the Humber, Wales and the East of England.