CLACTON MP Douglas Carswell has called on the Government to end subsidies for wind farms.

The Ukip MP asked Energy and Climate Change Minister Andrea Leadsom what plans she had to reduce public subsidies for the onshore and offshore wind industries, during a debate in the House of Commons.

In response, she said projects such as the Gunfleet Sands wind farm, off Clacton, provided enough clean energy to power more than 100,000 homes, thanks to hundreds of millions of pounds invested by developer Dong Energy.

She added: “As we have made clear, however, we have to get the right balance between supporting newer technologies, such as offshore wind, and being tough on subsidies to keep bills as low as possible. We will always be working towards making technologies subsidy-free.”

Following the debate, Mr Carswell said onshore wind turbines on the edge of Clacton ate up public money and subsidies.

He added: “The Government needs to ask itself if these schemes are so popular, why can’t the developers and investors support them independent of taxpayers’ money?

“Clacton constituents and people up and down the country who struggle with energy bills would be in a far better place were it not for the subsidies that her department insists on providing.”

But Green campaigner Chris Southall, of Burrs Road, Clacton, criticised Mr Carswell’s stance over wind power.

“The alternative is nuclear power and giving huge subsidies, with money going abroad to China and France,” he said.

“Whereas we could subsidise wind farms here in the UK and produce techonology we can export.

“It doesn’t make sense economically or from a point of view of tackling climate change.

“As far as people in Clacton are concerned only a tiny part of their bill goes to such a subsidy, whereas local jobs in places such as Brightlingsea are dependent on the wind farm servicing industry.”

Mr Southall said Britain had committed itself to lowering carbon emissions at the recent Paris Climate Change conference.