Power suppliers and clean energy backers are among the most optimistic market players in believing private capital will respond well to new premier Kier Starmer’s ambitions to expand clean energy in Britain.

A survey of nearly 380 senior figures in UK energy, conducted by law firm Womble Bond Dickinson, finds that more than half believe City institutions and venture capital funds are poised to put their money behind Labour’s aspirations.

56% of those surveyed – senior representatives of energy investors, suppliers and commercial energy consumers – said they expect the new government will be effective in advancing the transition to low-carbon energy sources during its first 100 days in power, with energy investors and suppliers particularly bullish.

Richard Cockburn, head of Womble Bond Dickinson’s UK energy and natural resources group, explained: “66% of the energy investors and suppliers we spoke to in the UK expect the government to be quick off the mark when it comes to energy transition, while a fifth  – 21% – believe ministers will be very effective in driving transition.

“Crucially, the private sector will want to see the new administration’s long-term commitment to transition” Cockburn went on.

“With our research showing that almost three-quarters (72%) of energy investors and suppliers believe the government won’t shy away from promoting low-carbon energy throughout its term, it seems many of them already have the certainty required.

“These findings are encouraging news. Following the new Labour chancellor’s warning that ‘UK public finances are in the worst state since the second world war’, private investment will need to play a major role in the transition to clean energy required to hit the government’s ambitious target to cut all emissions from electricity generation by 2030.”

The results of the Womble Bond Dickinson research also revealed that most senior energy figures believe policy intervention, in the form of stricter carbon emission regulations, will be the number one way of speeding up energy transition. This was followed by increased funding for clean energy research and development, and then the introduction of new subsidies for renewable energy projects.

The findings are taken from Womble Bond Dickinson’s annual Energy Transition Outlook which reports the views of boardroom executives from energy and utilities firms as well as leading international investors in the sector. The full report will be published later this year.


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