A version of this article by Green Alliance director Matthew Spencer first appeared on BusinessGreen.
The energy bill maintains the government’s track record of private enthusiasm and public reticence on its low carbon reform agenda. The Coalition appears to have maintained interdepartmental and cross-party support for electricity market reform, but has missed the opportunity to be clear about its low carbon ambitions. As a result it is losing support for reforms which had widespread acceptance two years ago, and the debate has deteriorated into hand to hand fighting between lobbies for renewables, nuclear and unabated gas.
Officials and ministers have spent two years wrestling with the complexity of the new contracting and institutional arrangements, but the draft bill shows that they do not yet have an answer to the most basic question: ‘What is the bill supposed to deliver, and by when?’ Read more
“Water, water everywhere, Nor any drop to drink” so states Coleridge in his lyrical poem The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. This is the curse of those attempting to get attention for water efficiency. We live in a country that, to the average person, suffers from too much water, ie rain, rather than too little. Read more
In today’s Times Chris Huhne was quoted as saying:
“We will legislate to allow the energy companies to incentivise owner-occupiers, so if they want to offer the chance of a cruise for two to the Norwegian fjords that’s something they can do through the eco-obligation. Or it could be a cash voucher, cash rebate, or rebate on your energy bill for a year or two years. It’s up to the energy companies.”
How about insulate your loft and get a hummer or a patio heater? Read more
Chris Huhne says it will be a “radical programme to bring our houses out of the dark ages”, while Greg Barker has called it a “game changing way of improving energy efficiency.”
The Green Deal certainly has great potential. But as governments in other countries have learnt, removing the up-front cost of insulation and other energy efficiency measures doesn’t mean that people will install them. Read more