10% of N Ireland energy 'renewable'
Almost 10% of energy consumed in Northern Ireland is from renewable sources, a report has revealed.
The amount of power generated has increased to 755,000 megawatt hours in the last 10 years, the study for the Department of the Environment said.
Richard Murphy, a lawyer in the Belfast office of McGrigors law firm and an expert in renewable energy, said further action is needed if the Northern Ireland government is to meet its target to produce 12% of all electricity consumed from indigenous renewable sources by 2012.
"The report is welcome evidence that use of sustainable energy is on the increase. We're clearly headed in the right direction. However, there is cause for concern," he said.
"The number of applications for new facilities is stacking up and delays in the planning process are causing significant delays. We know that some planning applications are taking as long as three years to be approved, so we desperately need to look at how that situation can be alleviated.
"The Government also has a target to get the use of green energy up to 40% by 2020, and unless the situation is addressed, that looks unlikely to happen."