The East Antrim Alliance candidate said: “In recent months many big-name high street brands have announced plans to make environmental protection a key priority. We now need to see government adopt the same approach when it comes to new public buildings.
“Tesco are to be congratulated on their decision to have 150 solar panels on one of their local stores. Marks & Spencer are also to be congratulated on their drive to become carbon neutral and IKEA are to be commended on their new store, planned in Holywood, which will get all its energy from renewable sources.
“Unfortunately, new schools funded by the Department of Education are built on a formula set in the early 1990s, and will be lucky to have any renewable energy sources at all.
“Peter Hain must have forgotten to tell the Department of Education and the Education and library boards about his plans to make Northern Ireland a world leader in renewable energy so no congratulations here.
“In line with the stated policy of the Secretary of State, new public buildings should be leading the way, not lagging behind the private sector.
“We have seen a big effort from many companies to go green, now the government must step up to the plate and match these effort. We need to see joined-up government and a coherent strategy on renewable energy in the public sector.”