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Young people give renewables the thumbs up
Published:  06 December, 2010

A Youth Panel survey has shown huge support for renewable energy among young people, according to the Department for Energy & Climate Change.

These figures are part of a report being presented by the Department for Energy & Climate Change's (DECC)  Youth Advisory Panel to energy and climate change minister Charles Hendry. The report calls for greater youth consultation on energy and climate change policy, and for young people to get involved.

Based on DECC's 2050 Pathways project, the report looks at the UK's energy policies from the perspective of those people who will have to live with those decisions for their entire adult lives. The report was drafted by young people aged between 16 and 25 who visited power stations, nuclear plants and projects promoting renewable energy sources to investigate the issues at first hand and met with experts, industry, pressure groups and innovators, to look at how we keep the lights on in 2050 while reducing carbon emissions.

The report says while it is important that there is enough energy to go around, it would be 'irresponsible' for us to only focus on providing energy to keep living the same way as we are today. 

Energy and climate change minister Charles Hendry said: "This report by DECC's Youth Panel is a remarkable piece of work which gives a fresh perspective on our energy policies and I would like to thank the panel for the energy, enthusiasm and rigour with which they have approached this work."

Youth Panel member Tom Youngman, 17, from Bath, said: "While we may not be able to offer new technological insight, the decision to pursue any particular technology will define our future, and as young people we have the opportunity to view these long-term decisions with a much increased sense of urgency and tangibility. We do not want to inherit a diminished planet, as it often seems we are being asked to, and this is a huge step towards ensuring a sustainable and equitable future for our and subsequent generations."

The report can be found online at www.decc.gov.uk.