MPs consistently overestimate the cost and level of opposition to onshore wind, according to a new poll.
The survey, commissioned by the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) from YouGov, shows that 52 per cent of MPs surveyed believe the level of strong opposition to onshore wind is more than 20 per cent.
The most recent government survey of energy attitudes shows that just two per cent of the population strongly opposes the technology.
Only 9 per cent of the 100 MPs surveyed by YouGov think that this figure is less than five per cent.
The poll also shows that MPs have inflated assumptions about the cost of onshore wind.
Just eight per cent of MPs were aware that onshore windfarms are now the cheapest way to add electricity generating capacity in the UK, according to the poll.
By contrast, 12 per cent believe that large nuclear power stations, like Hinkley Point C, provide the cheapest new capacity.
Responding to the poll Simon Clarke, Conservative MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, said the government should rethink its embargo on onshore wind.
He said: “People are telling us something really important – namely, that new onshore wind should no longer be ruled out of our energy mix for political reasons.
“With appropriate planning and democratic safeguards, the government’s blanket ban can be revised and allow this cheap, clean and popular technology to move forward as it should.”
Richard Black, director of the ECIU, said: “It’s somewhat alarming to find that MPs don’t know the facts on onshore wind, particularly how popular it is with the public – seventy-five per cent backing in the government’s most recent survey, and rising.
“With just 2 per cent of Britons expressing strong opposition, the myth that onshore wind is unpopular or divisive should now be put to bed once and for all.
“It’s a damaging myth, because investing in onshore wind is likely to reduce energy bills – so this is really something that MPs and anyone else who professes to care about energy bills should be getting their heads around.”
A public survey by Renewable UK found that 66 per cent would support a change in policy to allow more onshore windfarms to be built where they have local backing.
A separate report by the National Infrastructure Commission, published earlier this month, suggested the switch to greener energy can be achieved without increasing bills.