§ Mr. Battle
The Government are already supporting the commercial development of wind energy in the UK under the Non-Fossil Fuel Obligation (NFFO). At 31 December 1998, there were 58 wind projects operational, comprising 138 MW Declared Net Capacity. In addition, a further 69 wind projects, comprising 368 MW of capacity were contracted under NFFO-5 which I announced last September.
Support for manufacturers for research and development of wind turbine technology is available under my Department's New and Renewable Energy Programme. As referred to in my answer of 17 March 1999, Official Report, columns 700–01, total DTI expenditure on wind energy projects in 1997–98 was £1.5 million.
Support under the Department's Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) scheme is also available. This is a discretionary scheme aimed at attracting investment and creating/safeguarding jobs in the Assisted Areas. Guidance notes and application forms for this scheme can be obtained from local Business Links or Government Offices.