Wales's ambitions to become fossil-fuel free by 2050 are being held back by Westminster, according to the Welsh environment minister.
In an interview with the Ecologist this week, Jane Davidson said Wales wanted to stop using fossil fuels altogether by 2050 or possibly earlier and export renewable energy to the rest of the UK. She believes the country has the potential to double the amount of electricity it generates from renewable sources within the next 14 years - with the majority coming from marine and wind projects.
However, she said progress was being held up by Westminster, which retained powers to approve any power project over 50 megawatts in size.
'We're in this ludicrous position where there is this fantastic renewable energy resource in Wales, wind and 1,200 km of coastline and marine energy...we're also the second best place in the UK after the south-west for solar. So we have this amazing potential in terms of renewable energy but that portfolio is stymied by not having the energy powers which Westminster has refused to give us.
'We've got more in front of the planning commission than any other part of the UK. If we had those powers we could move much quicker,' she said
In the interview she also admitted the Welsh Assembly would support a decision to replace the Anglesey Nuclear power station and that opencast mining was likely to continue in Wales until at least 2025.
Welsh Assembly Government’s ‘Energy Policy Statement, A Low Carbon Revolution.’
Exclusive Jane Davidson: Westminster is holding back Wales's renewable energy ambitions
In an exclusive interview Welsh environment minister Jane Davidson tells Tom Levitt why she won't be opposing new nuclear power or selling off any forests... and why she wants to end Westminister's control over renewable energy
EXLUSIVE: How the Environment Agency is gagging one eyewitness to what is potentially one of the UK's biggest environmental crimes
The Environment Agency (EA) is within weeks of letting Monsanto escape its liability for dumping thousands of tonnes of cancer-causing chemicals in two quarries in Wales.
Biomass plant gets go-ahead but will not use waste heat
Campaigners have criticised the Environment Agency for not requiring a new wood-chip power plant in South Wales to reuse its waste heat
Welsh construction centre leads field in sustainability
The new Construction and Sustainable Energy Centre in Haverfordwest is a blueprint for the newbuild higher education buildings of the future, in Wales and beyond
Wales plans to bring in compulsory plastic bag charge
Welsh Government says a charge is the only way to reduce plastic bag use further and encourage reuse