5 steps the country could take to ensure a cleaner and more affordable future.
With energy bills soaring and households facing the biggest income squeeze in nearly 50 years, it’s clear that the UK needs a long-term plan to ensure a cleaner and more affordable future for the country.
The energy crisis is in particular focus today, with the energy price cap rising by 54 percent to £1,971, meaning millions are waking up in fuel poverty. Friends of the Earth have put together a 5-point plan to meet the country’s energy needs and ensure a cleaner and more affordable future.
1.Reject calls for new oil and gas extraction projects
Among the first things we could be doing is rejecting calls for new oil and gas projects. Some Tory MPs have recently used the energy crisis to push for more oil and gas projects as they seek to blame the push for Net Zero emissions for adding to people’s bills.
Extracting more oil and gas will only lead to further climate breakdown. What’s more, it fails to address immediate needs of energy security and soaring energy prices.
New oil and gas fields take on average 28 years to start producing. Our leaders must ditch the distractions and focus on real solutions that help people right now.
2. Rapidly increase renewable power infrastructure
If the UK is to turn away from harmful fossil fuels then it must increase its renewable power infrastructure. Homegrown renewable energy is the cheapest form of energy, and onshore wind and solar farms are the fastest to build.
3. Help homes get off gas
If everyone is to have access to affordable clean energy, then the government should fully fund low-carbon heating solutions for those unable to pay and remove caps on the number of available grants.
Doing so would help the 10 million homes ready for fitting heat pumps, and mean it isn’t just the wealthy who can benefit from the transition to a low-carbon future.
4. Prioritise and fund energy efficiency
With the nation struggling to pay its energy bills, improving energy efficiency is a no-brainer. Task and fund councils to roll out street-by-street insulation programmes, starting with the neighbourhoods most in need.
5. Introduce a windfall tax on fossil fuel companies
With the likes of BP making profits of $12.8 billion (£9.5 billion) in 2021 and Shell posting record profits of $19.3 billion (£14.3 billion) driven by soaring oil and gas prices, calls have grown for a windfall tax on the profits of oil and gas companies.
Let oil and gas companies foot the bill and help fund insulation and financial support for those having to choose between heating and eating.
Article reproduced from Friends of the Earth