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Page last updated at 14:16 GMT, Friday, 10 July 2009 15:16 UK

Energy gap

Allister Craddock
The Politics Show East Midlands

The planning officer for the East Midlands Regional Assembly warns there is a big gap between Government aspirations on combating climate change and the reality of what people are prepared to accept on the ground.

Wind farm

Video: Coming up

Andrew Pritchard tells the Politics Show: "Somehow we have got to bridge that gap."

And he believes feed-in tariffs where local people see the benefits of renewable energy policies in their fuel bills could be part of the answer.

He accepts that the Regional Assembly opted for a much lower target on renewable energy than the Government - 6% of the electricity consumed in the East Midlands compared with the national target of 10% by 2010.

He maintains it was better to set a realistic objective, given the level of opposition to proposals for wind farms.

Falling short

But, our Political Editor, John Hess points out that our region has fallen way short of the assembly's less ambitious target.

The figure is currently running at about 3%.

That amounts to enough energy to power just 60,000 of the region's 2m homes.

Wind turbine
Wind power - the East Midlands is lagging behind

Lincolnshire is taking more than its share of wind farms.

About 70% of the 101 turbines up and running in the region are within the county's boundaries.

So far Nottinghamshire has just one in operation.

And there is not a single one in Derbyshire.

Controversial wind turbines

John Hess reports on a controversial proposal for seven turbines near Sutton Bridge in Lincolnshire.

Local Conservative MP, John Hayes, is unequivocal.

He insists: "Wind turbines are a terrible intrusion in our flat Fenland landscape.

John Hayes
MP John Hayes thinks the wind turbines are visually intrusive

"Renewable energy needs to pass the twin tests of environmental and economic sustainability and wind power fails on both counts."

But the proposal is not without its supporters locally.

And Helen Hall, project manager for RES, the company behind it, says there are no sensitive environmental features involved.

She says it is the kind of project the country needs.

Wind farms

Marie Ashby will be live from the site of another controversial wind farm proposal at Carsington Water in Derbyshire, near the Peak Park boundary.

Wind farm
A typical wind farm but not everyone is a fan

Locals are anxiously awaiting the verdict of a High Court judge on whether the scheme can go ahead.

The cast includes a representative of the Wind Energy Association, the chairman of the Peak District National Park Authority, Narendra Bajaria,and local campaigners with strong views on either side of the argument.

Watch the Politics Show in the East Midlands with Marie Ashby at 11:00 on Sunday on BBC One.

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