Prime minister Rishi Sunak must maintain the Conservatives’ pledges to decarbonise energy by 2035 and eliminate carbon emissions by 2050, a trade association urges today.
In an open letter to Sunak, the Association for Decentralised Energy implicitly urges him to ignore voices in Conservative media and on his party’s back benches, arguing that Net Zero should become a dividing issue in the approaching general election.
“If we are trying to avoid placing the burden of extra costs on the consumer, then halting progress on Net Zero is the last thing we should be considering”, Caroline Bragg, the ADE’s interim CEO – pictured – , tells the premier.
Bragg cites analysis from researchers at Carbon Brief, estimating that David Cameron’s pause of green policies has increased UK energy bills by a cumulative £2.5 billion since 2013.
The ADE chief calls in aid Conservative former energy minister Tim Skidmore. His Independent Review of Net Zero, published in January, found Britain’s transition to carbon neutrality could be worth £1 trillion to British businesses by the end of this decade.
“The government itself estimates that private investment of £100 billion can be leveraged by 2030 if the UK adheres to the Net Zero Strategy, creating a total of 900,000 jobs by the end of the decade”, the ADE chief tells Sunak.
Since motorists’ concern over clean air measures helped secure an unexpected Tory win in last month’s Uxbridge & South Ruislip by-election, called to replace disgraced liar leader Johnson, influential Conservatives such as Craig MacKinley’s Net Zero Scrutiny group & the Daily Mail, Express & Telegraph have stepped up demands for Net Zero to be scrapped.
On 29 June 2019 Parliament unanimously adopted a legally binding commitment to the net zero goal by 2050. Last month, Conservative peer and long-time environmentalist Zak Goldsmith resigned from Sunak’s administration, publically questioning in his resignation letter the PM’s commitment to fighting climate change.
“The Conservative Party has a long and prestigious tradition in acting decisively against climate change”, ADE chief Bragg tells the PM. “Recent statements by your office however risk undermining that tradition and business confidence to invest in UK Plc, and at a time when other countries are doing so much to attract investment”.
Twice-yearly polls conducted by energy ministry D-ESNZ showed earlier this that 82% of Britons remain concerned about climate change, Bragg reminds the premier.
Decentralised energy companies are already saving consumers money through decarbonisation, she tells him.
“Through energy efficiency, we are shielding people from the perils of climate change, energy vulnerability and working towards the £5 billion of bill savings for households through doing so”, the ADE boss states
“Through flexibility, we are returning money to consumers’ pockets, including through the hugely successful Demand Flexibility Service
“Through heat networks, we are decarbonising people’s homes and offices, creating billions of pounds of new investment in utility infrastructure and where today, consumers on average pay more than £300 less in bills”.
The Association for Decentralised Energy enumerates its members in sectors including heat networks, industrial CHP, energy efficiency and trigeneration.
Read more on the ADE’s Net Zero policies here.