Huhne unveils vision of a low carbon future

Energy secretary Chris Huhne today outlined a new plan that could ensure long term energy requirements are fulfilled in the UK in a more sustainable way.

Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Chris Huhne today outlined a new plan that could ensure long term energy requirements are fulfilled in the UK in a more sustainable way. He argued he was engaging in a “once in a generation chance” to create “cleaner, greener power” and “affordable energy for decades to come”.

As well as investing in renewable and low carbon energy, Mr Huhe also promised to make Britain “one of the best places to do energy business”, encouraging the growth of environmentally friendly power.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) have explained that the government’s proposals will see:

• Reforms to provide long-term certainty for electricity investors;

• New markets having a built-in level playing field for low carbon;

• Rules for existing investments protected;

• The long term impact on household electricity bills lower than under the current market.

The government also outlined the scale of the challenge it faces. With nuclear and coal plants generating around a quarter of the UK’s existing generation capacity nearing the end of their lives and needing to be replaced by 2020, DECC also said that some new gas-fired power stations would have to complement nuclear and renewable energy sources.

This has the objective of reaching 30 per cent of electricity being generated by renewable sources in that year, up from an estimated 7 per cent today. This would also have to rise with greater electricity demand, which DECC estimates will double by 2050.

Some energy analysts claim the government’s plans may put Britain in a “high cost, low carbon” electricity market which involves consumers paying the price for more environmentally friendly power, with energy companies estimating it may cost them up to £200 billion in expenditure in power stations and networks over the next two decades.

The price comparison website uswitch argued the cost of the reforms could add £500 annually to the average energy bill; Mr Huhne, however, disagreed, arguing the rise would be much lower and if measures were not put in place it could cost even more and that the £500 claim was “absolutely bonkers“. The measures have been welcome by opposition MPs, but they have cautiously argued that consumers should not shoulder the cost of the reforms.

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5 Responses to “Huhne unveils vision of a low carbon future”

  1. Industry reactions to UK electricity market reform – Renewable Energy Focus |

    […] Scots' ambitionsScotsmanChris Huhne unveils plans for reform of UK energy marketThe GuardianLeft Foot Forward -CITY A.M. -eGov monitorall 262 news […]

  2. Mister Jabberwock

    Why does the title of this post not include the word “regressive” – as it would if such an announcement was made in any other area of policy

  3. Michael Cooper

    I was pleased to hear Geoff Hulne pay tribute to Ed Milliband in his Commons statement on the Cancun Conference.

  4. captain howdy

    So, of the four bullet points above, we can extract the key phrases, “New markets”, “level playing field for low carbon” and “investments protected”. Reading between the lines, Chris Poon’s vision for a low-carbon future is pretty similar to our high-carbon recent past: further trading of carbon credits, illusory offsetting, and the crossing of fingers in the hope that stimulus and investment will get the job done. Of course, no sign of regulating, taxing and ‘de-stimulating’ the fossil fuel industry – that would be ‘anti-business’ or something. Please someone tell me there’s anything worthwhile in this wonderful ‘vision’…

  5. Fay Tuncay

    There is NO scientific evidence for dangerous human-caused global warming.

    There is NO scientific evidence that CO2 in the atmosphere causes extreme weather events.

    But there IS evidence that there are now 5 million fuel poor households in Britain.

    The average household is spending £1,194 per year on energy bills. “Green” renewables and carbon taxes will add £880 a year to our energy bills.

    Carbon taxes WILL increase the price of food, clothes and travel.

    And there IS evidence that UK businesses are being hit by carbon taxes. This will cause the export of jobs overseas to countries without carbon taxes.

    Decarbonisation policies will cost us £18.3 billion a year for the next 40 years! This WILL cause a great deal of hardship to many families and businesses, just at a time when we need to rebuild the British economy.

    Repeal the Act! Campaign to Repeal the Climate Change Act 2008 exists to communicate an alternative viewpoint to the one-sided presentation of the climate change debate presented by the British government, the BBC and mainstream media and to lobby politicians for the repeal of the Climate Change Act 2008.

    Join us on the Web, Facebook and Twitter:“Repeal the Act! Campaign to Repeal Climate Change Act 2008”

    Please support us – thank you.

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