Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday vowed to turn Britain into the Saudi Arabia of wind power with a plan to connect every household to energy derived from floating turbines.
In a speech closing his Conservative party’s annual conference, the beleaguered Johnson sought to regain the initiative with an eye-catching plan to quadruple power generated by offshore wind from 10 to 40 gigawatts this decade.
But environmentalists said the plan fell woefully short of a promised “green recovery” to build a sustainable economy after the Covid-19 crisis, and critics accused Johnson of seeking to divert attention from a long series of pandemic failures.
The prime minister said new investment of £160 million ($208 million, 176 million euros) for ports and factories to make next-generation turbines would support 60,000 jobs.
“Offshore wind will be powering every home in the country,” Johnson told the online conference, which this year has been accompanied by Conservative mutterings over his leadership amid a second wave of the pandemic.
“As Saudi Arabia is to oil, the UK is to wind -– a place of almost limitless resource, but in the case of wind without the carbon emissions, without the damage to the environment,” he said.
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