Cumbrian energy panel names Government scientist chairman

Government science advisor Sir Martin Holdgate will lead a new panel of experts established by Cumbria Vision to help develop renewable energy in the county.

Sir Martin was appointed chairman of the Cumbria Renewables Panel at its inaugural meeting at the Lake District National Park's headquarters in Kendal on Monday.

He is a former Government chief scientist and deputy secretary, environment protection at the Department of the Environment.

The panel will advise Cumbria Vision, county council and the national park on how best to turn renewable energy opportunities into results on the ground.

Cumbria Vision said branching out into new and existing forms of renewable energy could create 1,500 new jobs. Tidal, wave, biomass and microgeneration are deemed the most likely forms of renewable energy production likely to reap significant economic rewards in Cumbria.

Sir Martin, who lives near Kirkby Stephen, said: "Renewable energy can make an important contribution to Cumbria's economy, and the establishment of this panel will help ensure that the county is well placed to reap these rewards. The panel will be able to think strategically about the contribution the different technologies can make, while safeguarding Cumbria's very special environment and tourist industry."

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