The Thick Of It

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Adam Barber
November 1, 2012
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This content is from our archive. Some formatting or links may be broken.
The Thick Of It

What a mess.

Once again the UK energy markets have spent the past few days dominating the headlines and generating yet more column inches, for all the wrong reasons.

Little wonder then, that for those stuck in the Glasgow conference and exhibition halls, the unfolding drama played out like the latest episode of The Thick Of It.

For those that missed it, energy minister John Hayes seemingly sounded the death knell for UK onshore wind, following candid ill-considered comments to a major UK daily.

Comments of course, that were made right after he stepped from the stage at a RenewableUK drinks reception, where he’d delivered a series of anodyne, and frankly rather vanilla remarks, to an already sceptical conference crowd.

Queue fireworks in Westminster and the start of a day of attacks and counter attacks, as politicians and personalities added fuel to the fire, rolled up their sleeves and drew lines in the sand.

And to think that we’d moved beyond all of this.

Now, political wrangling over the future of the wind energy markets is not new to the UK. And the ability to win over the electorate and to use this area of the energy sector as a campaigning tactic is a much-loved and proven, media tool.

However, in the week in which the UK finally found a buyer for Horizon, Britain’s beleaguered nuclear project, surely if there’s one lesson to be learnt, it’s that while petty politics might elevate individual ambitions, it’s hardly conducive to the wider need to instil greater levels of certainty, confidence and trust.

Yes, onshore wind gets a tough press and yes, the margins within the market have become increasingly thin. However, with an established and relatively diverse installation base, profitability within this area of the market remains.

And that’s significant. Profitable businesses create jobs, encourage greater sector diversity and perhaps most significantly, free up cash for future investment. Investment that, between now and 2020, is more often than not set for new ventures, located in deep water, offshore.

In the run up to the forthcoming UK energy bill and with the reformation of the electricity markets around the corner this latest public spat is ill-judged and badly timed.

What’s more, given the UK government’s wider desire to attract and retain overseas investment in large-scale public infrastructure, this sort of market wrangling, confused rhetoric and ongoing uncertainty, will hardly help

What a mess.

Once again the UK energy markets have spent the past few days dominating the headlines and generating yet more column inches, for all the wrong reasons.

Little wonder then, that for those stuck in the Glasgow conference and exhibition halls, the unfolding drama played out like the latest episode of The Thick Of It.

For those that missed it, energy minister John Hayes seemingly sounded the death knell for UK onshore wind, following candid ill-considered comments to a major UK daily.

Comments of course, that were made right after he stepped from the stage at a RenewableUK drinks reception, where he’d delivered a series of anodyne, and frankly rather vanilla remarks, to an already sceptical conference crowd.

Queue fireworks in Westminster and the start of a day of attacks and counter attacks, as politicians and personalities added fuel to the fire, rolled up their sleeves and drew lines in the sand.

And to think that we’d moved beyond all of this.

Now, political wrangling over the future of the wind energy markets is not new to the UK. And the ability to win over the electorate and to use this area of the energy sector as a campaigning tactic is a much-loved and proven, media tool.

However, in the week in which the UK finally found a buyer for Horizon, Britain’s beleaguered nuclear project, surely if there’s one lesson to be learnt, it’s that while petty politics might elevate individual ambitions, it’s hardly conducive to the wider need to instil greater levels of certainty, confidence and trust.

Yes, onshore wind gets a tough press and yes, the margins within the market have become increasingly thin. However, with an established and relatively diverse installation base, profitability within this area of the market remains.

And that’s significant. Profitable businesses create jobs, encourage greater sector diversity and perhaps most significantly, free up cash for future investment. Investment that, between now and 2020, is more often than not set for new ventures, located in deep water, offshore.

In the run up to the forthcoming UK energy bill and with the reformation of the electricity markets around the corner this latest public spat is ill-judged and badly timed.

What’s more, given the UK government’s wider desire to attract and retain overseas investment in large-scale public infrastructure, this sort of market wrangling, confused rhetoric and ongoing uncertainty, will hardly help

What a mess.

Once again the UK energy markets have spent the past few days dominating the headlines and generating yet more column inches, for all the wrong reasons.

Little wonder then, that for those stuck in the Glasgow conference and exhibition halls, the unfolding drama played out like the latest episode of The Thick Of It.

For those that missed it, energy minister John Hayes seemingly sounded the death knell for UK onshore wind, following candid ill-considered comments to a major UK daily.

Comments of course, that were made right after he stepped from the stage at a RenewableUK drinks reception, where he’d delivered a series of anodyne, and frankly rather vanilla remarks, to an already sceptical conference crowd.

Queue fireworks in Westminster and the start of a day of attacks and counter attacks, as politicians and personalities added fuel to the fire, rolled up their sleeves and drew lines in the sand.

And to think that we’d moved beyond all of this.

Now, political wrangling over the future of the wind energy markets is not new to the UK. And the ability to win over the electorate and to use this area of the energy sector as a campaigning tactic is a much-loved and proven, media tool.

However, in the week in which the UK finally found a buyer for Horizon, Britain’s beleaguered nuclear project, surely if there’s one lesson to be learnt, it’s that while petty politics might elevate individual ambitions, it’s hardly conducive to the wider need to instil greater levels of certainty, confidence and trust.

Yes, onshore wind gets a tough press and yes, the margins within the market have become increasingly thin. However, with an established and relatively diverse installation base, profitability within this area of the market remains.

And that’s significant. Profitable businesses create jobs, encourage greater sector diversity and perhaps most significantly, free up cash for future investment. Investment that, between now and 2020, is more often than not set for new ventures, located in deep water, offshore.

In the run up to the forthcoming UK energy bill and with the reformation of the electricity markets around the corner this latest public spat is ill-judged and badly timed.

What’s more, given the UK government’s wider desire to attract and retain overseas investment in large-scale public infrastructure, this sort of market wrangling, confused rhetoric and ongoing uncertainty, will hardly help

What a mess.

Once again the UK energy markets have spent the past few days dominating the headlines and generating yet more column inches, for all the wrong reasons.

Little wonder then, that for those stuck in the Glasgow conference and exhibition halls, the unfolding drama played out like the latest episode of The Thick Of It.

For those that missed it, energy minister John Hayes seemingly sounded the death knell for UK onshore wind, following candid ill-considered comments to a major UK daily.

Comments of course, that were made right after he stepped from the stage at a RenewableUK drinks reception, where he’d delivered a series of anodyne, and frankly rather vanilla remarks, to an already sceptical conference crowd.

Queue fireworks in Westminster and the start of a day of attacks and counter attacks, as politicians and personalities added fuel to the fire, rolled up their sleeves and drew lines in the sand.

And to think that we’d moved beyond all of this.

Now, political wrangling over the future of the wind energy markets is not new to the UK. And the ability to win over the electorate and to use this area of the energy sector as a campaigning tactic is a much-loved and proven, media tool.

However, in the week in which the UK finally found a buyer for Horizon, Britain’s beleaguered nuclear project, surely if there’s one lesson to be learnt, it’s that while petty politics might elevate individual ambitions, it’s hardly conducive to the wider need to instil greater levels of certainty, confidence and trust.

Yes, onshore wind gets a tough press and yes, the margins within the market have become increasingly thin. However, with an established and relatively diverse installation base, profitability within this area of the market remains.

And that’s significant. Profitable businesses create jobs, encourage greater sector diversity and perhaps most significantly, free up cash for future investment. Investment that, between now and 2020, is more often than not set for new ventures, located in deep water, offshore.

In the run up to the forthcoming UK energy bill and with the reformation of the electricity markets around the corner this latest public spat is ill-judged and badly timed.

What’s more, given the UK government’s wider desire to attract and retain overseas investment in large-scale public infrastructure, this sort of market wrangling, confused rhetoric and ongoing uncertainty, will hardly help

What a mess.

Once again the UK energy markets have spent the past few days dominating the headlines and generating yet more column inches, for all the wrong reasons.

Little wonder then, that for those stuck in the Glasgow conference and exhibition halls, the unfolding drama played out like the latest episode of The Thick Of It.

For those that missed it, energy minister John Hayes seemingly sounded the death knell for UK onshore wind, following candid ill-considered comments to a major UK daily.

Comments of course, that were made right after he stepped from the stage at a RenewableUK drinks reception, where he’d delivered a series of anodyne, and frankly rather vanilla remarks, to an already sceptical conference crowd.

Queue fireworks in Westminster and the start of a day of attacks and counter attacks, as politicians and personalities added fuel to the fire, rolled up their sleeves and drew lines in the sand.

And to think that we’d moved beyond all of this.

Now, political wrangling over the future of the wind energy markets is not new to the UK. And the ability to win over the electorate and to use this area of the energy sector as a campaigning tactic is a much-loved and proven, media tool.

However, in the week in which the UK finally found a buyer for Horizon, Britain’s beleaguered nuclear project, surely if there’s one lesson to be learnt, it’s that while petty politics might elevate individual ambitions, it’s hardly conducive to the wider need to instil greater levels of certainty, confidence and trust.

Yes, onshore wind gets a tough press and yes, the margins within the market have become increasingly thin. However, with an established and relatively diverse installation base, profitability within this area of the market remains.

And that’s significant. Profitable businesses create jobs, encourage greater sector diversity and perhaps most significantly, free up cash for future investment. Investment that, between now and 2020, is more often than not set for new ventures, located in deep water, offshore.

In the run up to the forthcoming UK energy bill and with the reformation of the electricity markets around the corner this latest public spat is ill-judged and badly timed.

What’s more, given the UK government’s wider desire to attract and retain overseas investment in large-scale public infrastructure, this sort of market wrangling, confused rhetoric and ongoing uncertainty, will hardly help

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Not a member yet?

Become a member of the 6,500-strong A Word About Wind community today, and gain access to our premium content, exclusive lead generation and investment opportunities.