More than 80 organisations from across Lancashire and the North have called on the Chancellor ahead of the Budget to “Keep it Clean” and back renewable energy.
The signatories include councils, small-scale renewable projects, business groups, faith groups, and nature conservation organisations.
In a declaration sent to the Chancellor, George Osborne, they say: “The future we want is one with clean air, healthy people and resilient communities … To make this vision real, the 2016 Budget must enable us to develop and grow renewables for our region into the 2020s.
“The UK government should be celebrating clean energy as core to its economic plan. To cherish what we love about our region and reassert our place in the forefront of the world’s economy, we ask the Chancellor to back clean energy for the North.”
The declaration also reflects concern over the extreme wet weather that badly affected parts of the North this winter linking this with the need to shift to renewable energy to reduce the risk of extreme weather from climate change.
So far negotiations about the Northern Powerhouse have ignored the need for new energy infrastructure.
The groups backing the declaration are clear that this should be clean, renewable energy combined with the benefits of smart energy technologies and reducing energy waste.
Phil Davies, director at Community Energy Cumbria Ltd, said: We really need the Government to acknowledge that supporting community renewable energy represents the perfect vehicle for job creation, social well-being and environmental common sense. Surely this is what we all want a northern powerhouse to deliver.”