Government climate goals threatened by torturous application process and soaring cost of construction

UK wind farms are being delayed by lengthly planning applications and rising construction costs, the Guardian reports.

According to the British Wind Energy Association (BWEA), 262 wind projects are stuck in planning stages and the rate of government approval is slowing. Planning permission takes on average 15 to 20 months in England, and longer in Scotland and Northern Ireland. The BWEA cites a project in Norfolk which has been delayed for seven years.

The slow rate of approval and construction of wind farms makes it increasingly unlikely that the government will meet the EU target of producing 15% of its energy from renewable sources by 2020.

Charles Anglin, director of communications at the BWEA, warned that if the government failed to address the issue: 'it is just storing up more difficult problems further down the road.'