§ Mr. Hesford
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans he has for encouraging the power generating companies to increase their use of renewable energy sources. 
§ Mr. Battle
Renewable sources of energy make an important contribution to secure, sustainable and diverse energy supplies and are an essential element of a cost-effective climate change programme. The Government are working towards a target of renewable energy providing 10 per cent. of UK electricity supplies as soon as possible. They hope to achieve this by 2010. I have recently published "New and Renewable Energy: Prospects for the 21st Century", which seeks views on the balance of measures and the precise form of support for renewables in the next stage of their development. It identifies the key issues which the Government, industry and other players will need to address. It affirms the Government's commitment to their new drive to develop renewables; identifies the practical steps which might be needed to achieve this objective; and seeks to engage a wider public in the development and realisation of its strategy.