Ecotricity’s vision for 2030 is ambitious, and it needs to be. Fossil fuels, which contribute to the national release of carbon emissions, make up 60% of the energy that is fed into our National Grid. 33% comes from nuclear fuel and just 0.7% from renewable energy production. If the country is to reduce our carbon emissions at anything like the rate we need to by 2030, things need to change, and fast. Ecotricity – as the world’s first Green Energy supplier, are in a position to lead the way. They have outlined five policy initiatives that would make that target achievable.
Create a Minister for Carbon
The first Ecotricity vision is for the creation of a new ministerial role – a Minister for Carbon, who would have the power to set enforceable carbon limits across every sector in the economy. This would not only push awareness and visibility of the carbon emission issue up the political agenda, but would ensure compliance.
Related: Who are Ecotricity?
Without a dedicated government steer, the emissions issue will not be solved.
80% Green Energy by 2030
By ensuring that Britain is producing 80% of its energy from renewable, green sources by 2030, renewable energy producers will save the economy an estimated £11.7bn in fossil fuel costs. There will be savings across the board, with £1.25bn realised in health and environmental benefits. Quite simply, a cleaner environment means a healthier population.
80% green energy production is ambitious, but achievable, if government shows a willingness to invest in renewables now.
The renewables energy industry needs a hand up if they are to compete with the huge investment available to fossil fuel suppliers. A massive expansion of green energy production needs massive investment, and ‘Quantitative Greening’ will go some way towards ameliorating costs.
End Fossil Fuel Subsidies
Ecotricity propose an end to government subsidies being paid to fossil fuel energy suppliers by 2025, saving the economy millions in public money.
Support for Electric Transport
Electric transport infrastructure and manufacturing needs more government backing. The Treasury can help move Britain towards a greener future by scrapping VAT on electric cars, thus helping to ensure that by 2030, every new car is electric. With new industry players like Google and Apple investing heavily in electric car technology, this is likely to be a growth area and the aim achievable.
The proposed 2030 finishing line of 80% green energy in Britain will be a stretch, but Ecotricity has set out sound economic principles behind their proposal. They have commissioned an independent consultancy, Cambridge Econometrics, who have modelled the economic impact of a Green Britain, which supports renewable energy, electric cars and a subsequent reduction in emissions. Their economic projection foresees a GDP increase of up to £5bn if the country adopts electric cars, and savings of almost £8bn on our annual oil import bill.
Not only does greening our energy production make sound environmental sense, but it also makes financial sense. With Ecotricity leading the way with electric car infrastructure and Green Mills, there is no reason why this vision cannot be rolled out across the country, with a view to hitting the 80% target.