UK says renewable auction outcome doesn't threaten climate goals

Britain's cabinet meeting at Number 10 Downing Street, London

LONDON (Reuters) -The result of a recent subsidy auction for renewable energy projects does not threaten Britain's climate goals, its climate minister said on Tuesday, responding to criticism over a lack of demand for offshore wind development.

Offshore wind developers stayed away from Friday's auction, arguing the price offered by the government did not reflect rising industry costs, something which is hampering wind projects globally.

"The outcome for one technology in one auction does not prevent us from reaching those goals," Energy Security and Net Zero Minister Graham Stuart told parliament.

Britain's 2050 net zero emissions target calls for reaching 50 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind capacity by 2030, from around 14 GW now.

Stuart said he regretted that no offshore wind projects were funded in the latest round, but that the auction provided "valuable learning" for future rounds, which are held annually.

The opposition Labour Party's climate spokesman Ed Miliband said the failure to respond to developers' warnings about rising costs ahead of the auction was "an act of economic self harm by this government."

(Reporting by Sachin Ravikumar, writing by William James)