Energy secretary Chris Huhne has attacked "climate sceptics and armchair engineers" for criticising renewables, in a speech today on the economic benefits of green energy.
Huhne insisted the government is backing renewable energy and has resolved to make the UK the largest market in Europe for offshore wind.
His speech to the annual renewable industry conference comes in the wake of the publication of government proposals to reduce subsidies for green technologies including onshore wind, although the plans contained better news on support for offshore wind, wave and tidal power.
And the solar industry is bracing itself for an announcement on the review of feed-in tariffs that pay people for the electricity they generate from small scale renewables, which is expected to slash payments for solar electricity.
The industry claims the expected move will hit jobs and growth in the sector.
But the energy secretary said today that renewable energy technologies would deliver a new industrial revolution, creating jobs and bringing investment into the UK.
And he accused an "unholy alliance" of short-termists, armchair engineers, climate sceptics and vested interests of selling the UK economy short by their refusals to acknowledge the benefits that renewables will bring.
Critics claim renewable energy is expensive and unreliable and that support for it adds to consumer bills, but proponents say shifting to green power reduces the reliance on fossil fuels which have driven recent large rises in household bills.
Huhne told the RenewableUK conference: "Across the length and breadth of Britain, new companies are creating new jobs and delivering the technologies that will power our future.
"At a time when closures and cuts dominate the news cycle, next-generation industries are providing jobs and sinking capital into Britain.
"I want to take aim at the curmudgeons and faultfinders who hold forth on the impossibility of renewables, the climate sceptics and armchair engineers who are selling Britain's ingenuity short.
"Yes, climate change is a manmade disaster. Yes, the UK is only 2% of global carbon emissions. But if we grasp the opportunity now our businesses and economy can be much more than 2% of the solution."
He told the conference that "we are not going to save our economy by turning our back on renewable energy".
"It is this three-party consensus that makes the UK such a a good place to invest. So I can today assure you that this government has resolved that we will be the largest market in Europe for offshore wind."
But Simon Less, head of environment and energy at thinktank Policy Exchange, said: "Chris Huhne's words are unhelpful and deeply worrying.
"Conflating those who want to see cost-effective carbon emissions reduction - in other words policies that can be sustained and so will deliver our long-term carbon targets - with climate science deniers, is insulting.
"To be greener, we must be cheaper.
"Existing renewable technologies have a key role to play in emissions reduction, alongside a range of other actions including increased energy efficiency, switching coal to gas generation, nuclear and emerging new technologies.
"What cannot be defended is wasting tens of billions of pounds on excessive short-term deployment of hugely expensive technologies, such as offshore wind. This damages decarbonisation."