Solar panels

Campaigning on renewables

A 100% renewable future is possible. We need to stop burning coal, oil and gas if we want to avoid catastrophic climate change.
  Published:  22 Aug 2017    |      2 minute read

Here in the UK, we've got colossal renewable energy resources to help us lower our climate-changing emissions. Wind, wave and sun and other sources such as tidal energy, hydro and geothermal have huge potential. There are lots of opportunities for people to create more local, community and individual ownership of energy generation.

But despite this, the UK has huge hurdles to overcome.

That's why Friends of the Earth and our supporters have been campaigning on renewables.

What we've achieved so far

Feed-In Tarrifs Campaign: Get paid to go renewable

Westmill Wind and Solar Farm
Westmill Wind and Solar Farm
Credit: Jon Challicom/Friends of the Earth

In 2011, communities were finding it difficult to raise cash for renewable energy projects and overcome planning problems. Friends of the Earth campaigned to make renewables pay.

Thanks to our successful campaign on feed-in tariffs and the renewable heat incentive, people can tackle climate change by installing renewable sources and get paid for feeding energy into the grid.

Install a clean, green energy system in your home, business or community building and you'll get paid for the electricity or heat you produce.

How does it work?

The feed-in tariff (FIT) is a payment to people generating their own electricity from renewable sources. The electricity you generate and use during the day is free and you get paid for every unit that you don't use but export back into the grid. Find out how you can apply

The renewable heat incentive (RHI) is similar to the FIT, but rewards people producing clean green heat. Find out how you can apply

A renewable future

The UK has come a long way since our feed-in tariff campaign win. On a sunny Saturday in March 2017, for the first time ever solar panels on rooftops and in fields cut demand for electricity so much that the the amount of electricity demanded by homes and businesses in the afternoon was lower than it was in the night.

Run on Sun Campaign

If all schools in the UK were run on solar power, every year they could save enough money to pay more than 6,000 teacher salaries. They could also produce as much energy as burning 100,000 tonnes of oil, and save as much carbon as taking 110,000 cars off the road for a year.

Our Run on Sun Campaign pushed for huge increases in community renewables, with a focus on solar panels on schools.

Hundreds of schools signed up to find out about solar options.

Run on Sun costumes 2014
Run on Sun Campaign

Join us to campaign on climate change

Renewables are playing an important part in tackling climate change, but we have a long way to go.

We know that the vast majority of proven reserves of oil, coal and gas need to be kept in the ground – they are unburnable. We need strong renewable energy sources and commitments to keep those fossil fuels in the ground.