Select Committee on Environmental Audit Sixth Report

Filling the gap—energy efficiency, renewables, and other low carbon options

29. In assessing progress against the White Paper's goals, one of the key issues in our inquiry was the whether its focus on energy efficiency and renewables remained realistic. In the course of our inquiry, therefore, we explored the contribution these could make to 'plugging the gap' caused by the decline of older coal and nuclear power stations. We survey below four key approaches which could deliver significant carbon reductions within the electricity generating sector without recourse to nuclear new build; and we assess briefly the progress made by Government in each of these. These areas are:

  • Energy efficiency;
  • Renewables;
  • Clean coal and carbon capture and storage;
  • Distributed generation (including micro-CHP etc).

30. This section is primarily about the technical potential of the approaches outlined in the Energy White Paper: issues of cost we discuss later in this report in the context of investment risk and Government policies.

Energy Efficiency

31. Any attempt to forecast future demand for electricity (and, for that matter, gas) relies crucially on assumptions about the rate of energy efficiency improvements in the economy. Organisations involved in promoting energy efficiency have argued, for example, that carbon emissions would now be 28MtC greater each year had energy efficiency improvements not contributed to a reduction in demand over the last 30 years.[35] Moreover, in study after study, investments in energy efficiency have always been shown to be far more cost-effective, in terms of reducing carbon emissions, than any form of investment in low-carbon generation. Indeed, far from being a net cost to the economy, they yield positive returns.[36]

32. However, demand for electricity is still increasing at about 1.5% a year,[37] and we note that technological advances have generally resulted in increases in consumption rather than reductions. There are particular risks in the growth of electronic equipment and the increasing use of air conditioning in offices and houses. To take one small example, the introduction of television digital set-top boxes in preparation for the digital switch-over in 2012 will contribute to climate change through a 0.4% increase in UK domestic electricity consumption—particularly when they are left on in standby mode.[38] The use of a regulatory approach to limit standby power consumption to 1 Watt would help, but the basic point remains. It has yet to be shown that technological development, of itself, will result in reductions in energy and electricity consumption. Indeed, there is a long-standing economic argument to suggest that, while energy efficiency improvements may lead to energy savings at a micro-economic level, they result in additional demand in the economy as a whole. This is because, by making the effective cost of energy cheaper, they promote the development of additional energy-consuming products or services.[39] We welcome the fact that the UK Energy Research Centre is now intending to review this theory.[40]

33. The EAC has also pointed out in previous reports that there are fundamental difficulties in measuring the contribution of energy efficiency because of the way that savings are measured against 'business-as-usual' projections.[41] It is not easy, for example, to establish the baseline against which savings are to be assessed; while if business-as-usual (BAU) forecasts prove to be underestimated, the expected carbon savings might not be achieved. We note that the Science and Technology Committee of the House of Lords has also expressed its concern about this issue in a report it published last year on energy efficiency.[42]

34. Despite these conceptual difficulties, we have no doubt that energy efficiency can contribute very substantially to reductions in both demand and carbon emissions. The provision of energy efficient lighting and the use of Combined Heat and Power on both a domestic and community scale, for example, would reduce energy consumption significantly. Indeed, the White Paper itself envisaged that the rate of energy efficiency improvement would need to be doubled and that, if this were achieved, a reduction of 10MtC could be expected by 2010 and the same amount again by 2020. However, progress in this area has been slow. It took a year for the Government to publish its Energy Efficiency Implementation Plan. The various consultations by the Treasury on fiscal instruments for domestic energy efficiency have yielded little in the way of practical results. The review of the building regulations—seen within the White Paper as a crucial opportunity to impose far more challenging energy efficiency requirements, and brought forward for that very reason—has been watered down, as one of our latest reports, Sustainable Housing: A Follow-Up Report, clearly demonstrates.[43] Moreover, the energy intensity ratio is not included in the suite of 68 sustainable development indicators, and progress against it is not routinely published. While it is too early to measure reliably any change in the trend, data for 2004 does not show any significant improvement and there is no indication that such a change has taken place since then.

35. There is little evidence as yet that the Government has succeeded in doubling the rate of energy efficiency improvements, as envisaged in the Energy White Paper. Indeed, given the importance the Government attaches to this objective, it is surprising that progress against the energy intensity ratio is not regularly reported and that it is not even included in the newly revised suite of 68 Sustainable Development indicators. The Government must address this glaring anomaly.

36. Radical improvements in energy efficiency will require a changed approach to the provision of energy which relies on delivering energy services rather than the provision of electricity or gas alone. In this context, EAC emphasised in its 1999 report, Energy Efficiency, the importance of developing a market for energy services, and we are disappointed that so little progress has been achieved since then. [44] The pilot study to examine the implications of suspending the 28 day rule has still not been completed, but Ofgem was in any case downbeat in terms of the likely results: "It has not yet been proven that energy services are an effective way of delivering energy efficiency measures. … The current Energy Efficiency Commitment administered by Ofgem has shown to be a more productive route for the promotion of energy efficiency."[45] In her evidence, Catherine Mitchell pointed out that the NETA regulations were intended to allow for the creation of Energy Service Companies - yet this provision had not so far been utilised. Ofgem were now trialling the concept of Registered Power Zones as a way forward in this area, but only on a very small scale.[46] Keith McLean of Scottish and Southern Power and Tony White of Climate Change Capital both pointed to the failure to install smart metering throughout the UK—a missed opportunity to develop a truly responsive demand management system which would reduce peak generating requirements through far more sophisticated tariffs and intelligent appliances.[47] Indeed, Keith McLean argued that we needed to move towards absolute demand reduction targets as a means of revolutionising our approach to energy saving, and various other organisations or individuals also supported such an approach.[48]

37. It is also not clear how effective are the Government's key domestic policy instruments for stimulating energy efficiency. With regard to business, EAC has in the past expressed concerns about the Climate Change Levy and its associated negotiated agreements—in particular, the failure to increase the rates of the Levy since its introduction and the size of the savings which the Government claims have been achieved through Climate Change Agreements.[49] The evaluation conducted by Cambridge Econometrics and published a year ago suggested that the Levy was not having a significant impact on industry. It concluded that energy efficiency improvements within industry might well have occurred in the absence of the Levy, as a result of technological change and the relative decline of UK energy-intensive sectors; and that, if the Levy had had an effect, it was likely that this was simply due to its announcement rather than to the ongoing impact of Levy rates.[50] The recent Budget has at least increased the rates, though it remains to be seen whether the scale of the increase will have any significant impact.

38. Similarly, the overall effectiveness of the main policy instrument in the domestic sector —the Energy Efficiency Commitment (EEC)—is also unclear. As with the CCL, an underlying concern is the difficulty of assessing the environmental impact of the EEC—particularly as energy supply companies are assessed in terms of outputs (eg number of loft installations) rather than outcomes (reduction in energy demand). The May 2005 report by the Public Accounts Committee of the House of Commons raised significant doubts on this score, stating that "It is not clear whether energy efficiency measures achieve the intended outcome. Much of the available scientific research implies that assumed savings are overstated."[51] In their evidence to us, WWF suggested that the EEC should be transformed into a mechanism based on absolute reductions in carbon[52] —an option which in our view would be well worth exploring in the context of setting absolute targets for energy consumption.[53] EAC has also pointed out that it will not necessarily be easy to achieve the doubling of the target envisaged for 2005-2008—as this would depend on a massive increase in the deployment mainly of loft and cavity wall insulation.[54]

39. The poor performance of the UK in making progress on energy efficiency contrasts strikingly with the commitment of other EU member states. Denmark has an exemplary history of promoting energy efficiency (as well as renewables) through a succession of energy strategies over the last 40 years, and this is reflected in the extent to which it has exploited the potential of combined heat and power (CHP). The recent initiative taken by the German Government to improve the efficiency of existing properties demonstrates a degree of political commitment and financial support which is entirely lacking here.[55] Indeed, while the many regulatory barriers in the UK certainly need to be addressed, lack of adequate funding is a significant issue and payback periods are often unrealistically long. Indeed, Dieter Helm ascribed the lack of progress on energy efficiency to the fact that the Government had made the mistake of viewing energy efficiency as a no-cost option, and that they were only now beginning to realise that it might require up-front financial support.[56] In his evidence to us, the Chief Executive of EDF, Vincent de Rivaz, went further and commented on the Government's failure to accord a sufficiently high priority to this agenda: "I am simply saying that we, the power industry, cannot solve all these issues regarding energy efficiency on our own. Where is the national campaign about energy efficiency in this country?"[57]

40. The Environmental Audit Committee has highlighted on previous occasions the failure by Government departmentsin particular, the Treasuryto take decisive action on energy efficiency. What is abundantly clear is that it will require a coordinated package of regulatory and fiscal policy instruments which offers much more in the way of both carrots and sticks, and that this must be accompanied by high-profile campaigns to raise awareness among the public. Far greater political leadership is required and far higher priority accorded to energy efficiency if the Government is to achieve the carbon reductions set out in the Energy White Paper. As part of such a strategy, we would also urge the Government to consider setting absolute targets for reductions in demand as a way of stimulating the growth of energy services and guaranteeing the level of carbon savings achieved.

Renewable energy

41. The other key plank of the Government's energy policy—in respect of electricity generation—was to promote a radical increase in the deployment of renewable energy. The Government's main policy instrument for doing so is the Renewable Obligation (RO), a requirement on electricity suppliers to source an increasing percentage of electricity from renewable sources. The RO is supplemented by various capital grants, some of which are available for specific technologies while others are on a 'technology blind' basis. The adequacy of capital grant funding—an issue of significant concern in the context of emerging technologies which are not yet cost-competitive—is an issue which we discuss later in this report.[58]

42. In the case of renewables, various targets exist and are almost all expressed as a percentage of total electricity generated or sold:

  • In 1999, the Government set out a target of 5% by 2003 and 10% by 2010—though the latter has now been largely superseded by the targets contained in the RO.
  • The RO targets rise steadily each year from 3% in 2002-03 to 10.4% by 2010-11. When the RO was initially launched, no further increase in the target was specified (ie the target remained at that level until the termination of the RO in 2027). However, further increases in the RO to 15.4% by 2015-16 were subsequently approved in address a lack of investor confidence which was threatening the value of Renewable Obligation Certificates.
  • The Energy White Paper endorsed the 10% target for 2010, and included an aspiration to double it by 2020—though it fell short of setting this as a firm target.
  • The EU Renewables Directive sets an overall indicative target of 22.1% by 2010 (12% of overall energy consumption). Under the EU burden-sharing agreement, the UK target is 10%.

43. The EAC has regularly monitored progress against meeting the RO target. The latest available data shows that renewables constituted only 3.1% of electricity supply (on an RO basis) in 2004—up from 2.2% in 2003. However, these percentages are below the RO targets for each year, and the UK is likely to fall well short of the 2010 target. The following graph indicates the overall position.

Source: EAC based on DTI Dukes 2005

Moreover, in terms of total renewable electricity supplied in 2004, 84% was generated from biofuels—mainly landfill gas. Of the remainder, hydro contributed over 10% and wind only 4.4%. Indeed, it is striking how wind power - often seen as the main medium term source of renewable energy—contributed only 1,935 GWh—less than 0.5% of the total electricity generated in the UK.[59]

44. Comparisons with other EU member states clearly demonstrate the UK's relatively poor performance in promoting renewable energy in spite of its rich natural resource. In terms of EU-15 rankings and excluding large hydro, the UK is second from the bottom with only Greece below it. Indeed, some of these countries have set more challenging targets than the UK and would appear to be pursuing them far more dynamically. Denmark, which we visited in the course of our inquiry, already generates nearly 20% of its electricity production from renewables, and is the European leader in co-generation with over 50% of gross electricity production met from CHP.[60] By the end of 2004, Germany had installed 17 GW of wind power—even though it is significantly less well-placed to exploit this resource than the UK—and it is also investing heavily in photo-voltaic generation.[61] Spain has recently set a target for renewables to supply 12% of total energy needs and 30% of electricity consumption by 2010 (in line with its indicative target under the EU Renewables Directive). Indeed, in terms of wind energy, it has performed so well that it has twice raised its original target for 2010 from 9GW to 13GW and subsequently to 20GW—which would see wind energy alone supplying 15 percent of national electricity consumption.[62] Sweden has gone even further by announcing that it aims to eliminate the use of fossil fuels by 2020. It is also worth noting at this point the economic opportunities for those countries which establish leadership positions in such technologies. In Germany, for example, the wind industry employs some 120,000 people, while in Denmark it is one of the biggest sectors in terms of export earnings.

Source: European Environment Agency

45. However, the evidence presented to us demonstrated that the potential for renewable energy in the UK was huge. The British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) pointed out that the deployment of wind was increasing at record rates. They argued that it could generate as much as 7% of electricity demand by 2010; and that by 2020 this might increase to 20%.[63] Indeed, the PIU report and the Energy White Paper both emphasised the medium and longer-term potential of renewable energy, and various studies have shown that the extent of both wind and marine energy available to the UK is very large indeed. The Garrad Hassan report, for example, conducted in 2001 for the Scottish Executive, concluded that 45 TWh a year (more than 10% of total UK generating capacity) from on-shore wind could be available by 2010; and that a further 80 TWh of off-shore wind, 50 TWh of wave energy, and 33 TWh of tidal energy could also be available by then—all at a cost of less than 7p per kWh.[64] The total renewable energy resource calculated in this study would supply over half the UK demand for electricity. Moreover, a subsequent study conducted in 2004 using more conservative assumptions nevertheless found that the practical potential of offshore wind and wave amounted to 100 TWh and 50TWh respectively.[65]

46. Despite the optimism of BWEA, slow progress is being made in exploiting this potential and we regard it as virtually certain that the UK will fail to meet the 2010 Renewable Obligation target—a view shared by the NAO.[66] This is largely because of the slow progress in developing off-shore wind capacity—on which so much depends for meeting the target. Indeed, there is a real danger that progress may stall completely due to a number of factors:

  • the extent of public opposition to on-shore wind farms mainly due to the visual impact they have on the landscape;
  • an escalation in the cost of offshore wind projects due to greater experience of the challenges being faced.[67]
  • other barriers of a financial or regulatory nature.

47. Indeed, the scale of the development required for wind to contribute up to 20% of UK electricity by 2020 is immense. Assuming the use of 5MW units and a load factor of 30%, it would require 6,000 turbines (30GW in terms of rated capacity)—and more if smaller 3MW units were used.[68] The physical challenge of installing so many units is huge—though not insuperable as the deployment rates achieved by Germany and Spain demonstrate. Moreover, while on-shore wind farms are economically attractive, the extent of opposition which developers are now facing may limit the scale of generation achievable, unless the Government takes more radical steps to tackle the planning process.[69] The scope for generating substantial amounts of power is far greater offshore, but progress on the 18 Round 1 projects allocated in 2001 is distressingly slow. These should all have been completed by now, but only 4 are operational, 3 have not even received planning approval yet, and one has been abandoned. The situation with the 15 larger Round 2 projects allocated in 2003—on which so much depends for getting anywhere near the 2010 target and the 2020 'aspiration'—is of even greater concern: only 4 have even got as far as making planning applications to the DTI.[70] Indeed, in its evidence even the BWEA acknowledged that further progress would require some form of additional long-term financial support from Government, and this was corroborated by Keith McLean of Scottish and Southern Power who confirmed that early estimates of the costs of offshore wind were perhaps somewhat optimistic.[71]

48. There are also other kinds of barriers which developers are facing. We noted during our visit to Denmark, for example, that a single agency is responsible for all aspects of an application to build an offshore wind farm. This contrasts markedly with the situation in the UK, where a long-standing commitment to develop a 'one-stop shop' has never been realised. We also discussed with Danish wind farm developers the issue of the £100 million Final Sums Liability payable to the National Grid in relation to phase 1 of the Thames Array wind farm. The developers were understandably reluctant to commit themselves to this connection charge guarantee until they had been granted planning permission, but if they missed the current application window consideration of the project by the National Grid could slip - thus delaying the entire project substantially.

49. The UK lags well behind almost all other EU-15 countries in terms of the percentage of electricity generated from renewables, and it is now certainas indeed the EAC has been forecasting for several yearsthat the Government will fall far short of the 10% renewables target set for 2010. However, the evidence presented to us indicated that renewables can deliver 20% of electricity generated by 2020. In this sense, the vision set out in the Energy White Paper is still achievable, though it will require a far greater degree of commitment in terms of implementation than has hitherto been demonstrated.

Clean coal and Carbon Capture and Sequestration

50. Gas and coal will undoubtedly play a dominant role in electricity generating mix for decades to come. The international aspects of this we discuss later in this report. In terms of the UK domestic market, coal has enjoyed a somewhat unexpected resurgence since 2000—largely because of the increase in the price of gas. It is interesting to contrast the projections offered in EP68 (the DTI Energy Projections paper dating from 2000) with both the outturn and with DTI's most recent forecasts. EP68 forecast that emissions from the power generating sector would steadily decline, largely due to the phase-out of coal which by 2015 might provide only 10% of the market.[72] In reality, as the EAC pointed out in 2002, EP68's projections proved incorrect: carbon emissions from the generating sector rose steadily from 2000 mainly because of the increased use of coal as a result of higher gas prices. The most recent DTI forecasts now indicate that coal will still constitute 25% to 30% of the total mix in 2015.[73]

51. Conventional coal-powered generators are inefficient, and per unit of electricity generate far more carbon emissions than CCGT plant. However, a number of submissions we received pointed out that new technologies could increase the efficiency of coal generation substantially. Drax Power, for example, submitted an interesting memorandum which argued that the retro-fitting of super-critical boilers could enable coal plants to improve their efficiency and contribute substantially to carbon reductions.[74]

52. More significantly, the development of carbon capture and storage (CCS) could reduce carbon emissions from coal-fired plant by 80%. Indeed, the Energy White Paper singled this technology out as being of such importance as to warrant an urgent 6 month research project to take it forward.[75] The reason for such urgency was the fact that there was only a limited window of opportunity for using depleted North Sea oil fields as a means of sequestering the carbon dioxide. Once they were closed, it would not be worthwhile to reopen them to sequester the carbon; whereas, while they were still in use, CCS could actually assist in recovering more oil from each field than would otherwise have been economically profitable.

53. The White Paper went on to state:

We will therefore set up an urgent detailed implementation plan with the developers, generators and the oil companies to establish what needs to be done to get a demonstration project off the ground. This study will reach conclusions within six months to enable firm decisions to be taken on applications for funding from international sources as soon as possible thereafter.[76]

It is now three years after this statement was published. The DTI has issued a number of relevant documents over this period, including a review of the feasibility of carbon capture and storage,[77] a paper on implementing a demonstration project,[78] and a carbon abatement strategy.[79] Moreover, the latest Pre-Budget Report announced a consultation on carbon capture and storage. As EAC has noted before in relation to Sustainable Development, the plethora of reports creates an impression of activity whilst progress in 'learning by doing' appears minimal. It is scandalous that so little progress in developing clean coal and carbon capture and storage has been made, and even the flagship BP-led DF1 project at Peterhead remains dependent on the establishment of a long-term financial framework which would provide greater confidence to investors.[80]

54. The Science and Technology Committee of the House of Commons has recently published a detailed report on carbon capture and storage, and we entirely support their overall conclusion that CCS must play a decisive role in reducing emissions both domestically and internationally. Indeed, as we discuss below (paragraphs 155 ff), western efforts to reduce carbon emissions will be entirely negated by the increasing use of fossil fuels in developing states such as India and China. As in the case of renewable technologies, significant economic benefits are likely to accrue to those countries which develop CCS, and it would therefore be grossly negligent on the part of the Government if the UK failed to exploit the historic opportunity afforded by both the availability of the North Sea oil reserves and the need to invest heavily in new generating plant.

Distributed generation and micro-CHP

55. The electricity generating network in the UK is based on a relatively small number of large generating plants situated in remote locations and linked together through the National Grid in order to supply electricity to regional distribution networks and thus to population centres. The flow of electricity is one-way only, from the large generating plants, through the grid, down through distribution networks and to households and businesses.

56. Distributed generation, by contrast, refers to the provision of small-scale generation on a local basis at the point of demand. Flows of electricity can be in both directions depending on the extent of local demand. Any excess electricity generated locally can be flow upwards and be shared with neighbouring local networks, thus creating a web of provision quite distinct to the centralised model. While 'intelligent' metering is required, recent research suggests that electricity networks are quite capable of dealing with significant levels of micro-generation. Distributed generation encompasses a variety of technologies including micro-wind, micro-CHP, small-scale biomass generation, and photo-voltaics.

57. Distributed generation offers potentially huge improvements in energy efficiency—particularly in the case of combined heat and power. Electricity losses on the UK grid system are in the order of 10%, while the efficiency of coal power stations can be as low as 35%. The overall efficiency achieved can therefore fall to 30%, and even in the case of the most modern CCGT plant it is only around 45%. There is also very little scope to exploit CHP because most large generating plant is located well away from population centres and because of the cost of fitting it to existing plant. By contrast, electricity losses in distributed systems are far lower, while the scope for using CHP is far greater. If both the electricity and heat load can be utilised, efficiencies of more than 90% can be achieved.

58. While all forms of distributed generation offer considerable potential, there has been particular interest in micro-CHP and this was reflected in some of the evidence we received. The Microgeneration Council, for example, pointed out that if half the domestic central heating boilers in the UK were replaced by micro-CHP units, by 2020 the total generating capacity would amount to 13GW—somewhat more than the current capacity of nuclear.[81] Even if micro-CHP units were fitted in only a quarter of the 1.3 to 1.5 million central heating boilers replaced each year, the capacity would still amount to over 6GW.[82] Micro-CHP would also deliver this capacity in winter evenings at times of peak generating demand. While it would not contribute much during the summer when there is little demand for space heating, micro-generation technologies such as photo-voltaics could balance it and provide an excellent complementary 'fit'. A range of other organisations—including the Energy Saving Trust, Lower Carbon Futures, and the Sussex Research Group —were also very positive about the potential role which micro-CHP could play, though there was some agreement that it would take at least until 2020 before this technology could begin to achieve widespread take-up.[83]

59. Given the potential importance of micro-CHP, it is surprising that support within Government appears somewhat lethargic. The technology is reasonably well developed and only needs to be scaled up to industrial production in order to reduce unit costs. The main barriers, therefore, to a more rapid uptake appear to be the investment needed for this to happen, and the physical and regulatory issues surrounding their installation. The Energy Act 2004 provided a statutory obligation on the government to produce a microgeneration strategy, and in June 2005 the DTI released a consultation document to pave the way for publishing such a strategy during 2006. This hardly seems to us to reflect any sense of urgency, while the consultation document itself is disappointingly vague.

60. Distributed generation, in conjunction with renewable technologies, is now being developed in remote parts of the world where the cost of providing electricity through installing a grid infrastructure is prohibitive. Moreover, in some developed countries such as Denmark, there has historically been greater emphasis on local power generation through, for example, community CHP schemes. Germany and Japan have also forged ahead with the deployment of photo-voltaic (PV) cells, and indeed Germany had installed nearly 100 times more PV generating capacity than the UK by the end of 2004.[84] Several organisations pointed out that a 'small is beautiful' approach produces additional benefits as it brings home to consumers the costs associated with energy consumption and the need to manage and reduce it. Indeed, distributed generation requires a different mind-set, and we are aware that little progress might be made here if the Government, large energy companies, and the public alike remain fixated on the concept of large-scale solutions to our energy needs.

61. We are particularly concerned in this respect with the role of Ofgem. The Sussex Research Group told us that Ofgem had done very little to encourage micro-CHP and had, if anything, gone out of their way to make it more complicated.[85] Similarly, householders who wish to install photo-voltaic panels are likely to run into an array of bureaucratic problems. It is particularly disappointing that so little progress has been made in eradicating such barriers even though various Ofgem-led working groups have been addressing such issues for at least four years. In their supplementary memorandum, Ofgem also made it clear that the Registered Power Zones initiative was aimed more at enhancing the capacity and the efficiency of the network and would not directly impact on the energy efficiency services being offered by suppliers.[86] Moreover, Ofgem's remit is primarily focussed on protecting the interests of consumers by maintaining low energy prices.[87] Although it is now obliged to have regard to sustainable development, this is a secondary duty which is in any case susceptible to a variety of interpretations.[88]

62. Distributed generation could fundamentally alter the structure of electricity networks in the UK. Micro-CHP, in particular, could deliver at peak winter periods as much as the current fleet of nuclear power stations, and could be a key technology for addressing both energy efficiency and fuel poverty. We see no reason why it should not begin to contribute substantially by 2020 and would urge the DTI and Ofgem to take a more proactive approach in developing the microgeneration strategy.


63. With the possibilities afforded by energy efficiency, renewables, distributed generation, and carbon capture and storage, it is abundantly clear that new nuclear build is not the only option for lower-carbon electricity generation within the UK. Indeed, the Government is spoilt for choice. It is all the more disappointing, therefore, that so little has been achieved since the Energy White Paper in developing these alternatives. The failure to do so will exacerbate the potential generating gap and will result in an even greater reliance on gas over the next ten years than would otherwise have been the case.

35   Ev83. Back

36   eg, PIU, The Energy Review, February 2002, p108.  Back

37   See above paragraph 10. Back

38   DTI/DCMS, Regulatory and Environment Impact Assessment: the timing of digital switchover, September 2005, paragraph 77. Back

39   For a good overview of the "Brookes-Khazoom" hypothesis, as it is known, see Chapter 3 of the report by the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee, Energy Efficiency, Second report of 2005-06, HL 21-I, July 2005. Back

40   DTI, The Energy Review, January 2006, p31 and footnote 22. Back

41   See especially EAC, Tenth Report of 2003-04,Budget 2004 and Energy, HC 490. Back

42   See footnote 39 above. Back

43   EAC, Fifth Report of 2005-06, HC 779. Back

44   EAC, Seventh Report of 1998-99, Energy Efficiency, HC159. Back

45   Ev240. Back

46   Q 41 and Ev 240. Back

47   QQ 259-263,Q 309. Back

48   QQ 257,Ev3 and Q 8.See also House of Lords Science and Technology Committee, Energy Efficiency, Second report of 2005-06, HL 21-I, July 2005. Back

49   EAC, Tenth Report of 2003-04,Budget 2004 and Energy, HC 490. Back

50   Cambridge Econometrics, Modelling the Initial Effects of the Climate Change Levy, March 2005, page xv . Back

51   Public Accounts Committee, Thirteenth Report of Session 2004-05,Ofgem:The Social Action Plan and the Energy Efficiency Commitment, HC 442, paragraph 26. Back

52   Q8. Back

53   See paragraph 36. Back

54   EAC, Tenth Report of 2003-04, Budget 2004 and Energy, HC 490, paragraph 65.Cf PAC report, paragraph30. Back

55   Energy in Building and Industry, January 2006: Investing to save approach shows UK the way forwardBack

56   Q 504. Back

57   Q 250. Back

58   See especially paragraphs 139-140. Back

59   Note that these figures are not on an RO basis. Of RO-eligible generation, 63% was from biofuels, 19% from wind, and 17% from small and medium hydro.(Large-scale hydro is excluded from the RO.)See Dukes 2005, Chapter 7. Back

60   European Environment Agency, The European Environment - State and Outlook 2005. Back

61   IbidBack

62   Renewable Energy Plan for 2005-2010, 26 August 2005. Back

63   QQ 146-156. Back

64   Ev139 Back

65   Gross, Technologies and Innovations for System Change in the UK, Energy Policy 32 (2004) pp1905-1917. Back

66   NAO, Renewable Energy, HC 210 of Session 2004-05. Back

67   QQ 269-273. Back

68   A 5MW turbine operating at a load factor of 30% might be expected to produce just over 13 GWh of electricity a year. About 80,000 GWh would be required if wind were to contribute 20% of total UK generating capacity.  Back

69   As we were drafting our report, for example, the rejection of the planning application for the proposed Whinash wind farm made newspaper headlines . Back

70   The Ends Report, Rising costs hit marine power ambitions, February 2006. Back

71   QQ 269-273. Back

72   Based on EP68's CL scenario (table 5.1, page 41).See also EP68 Annex B, which shows that emissions from coal were expected to fall steadily by 10MtC (LH scenario) or 20MtC (LL scenario). Back

73   DTI, Updated Energy Projections, February 2006, tables 27 and 28. Back

74   Ev400 ff. Back

75   DTI, Energy White Paper, February 2003, paragraph 6.63. Back

76   ibid. Back

77   DTI, Review of the Feasibility of Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage in the UK, September 2003. Back

78   DTI, Implementing a Demonstration of Enhanced Oil Recovery Using CO2 in the North Sea, May 2004. Back

79   DTI, A Strategy for Developing Carbon Abatement Technologies for Fossil Fuel Use, June 2005. Back

80   Ev118 and QQ 280-284. Back

81   Ev84 and Q 207. Back

82   Ev86. Back

83   Ev20ff, 25ff, 52ff, 82ff, 84ff. Back

84   794 MW as compared to 8MW.See Back

85   Q 138. Back

86   Ev240, paragraph 41 Back

87   See, for example, the PAC report on Ofgem (Public Accounts Committee, Thirteenth Report of Session 2004-05,Ofgem:The Social Action Plan and the Energy Efficiency Commitment, HC 442). Back

88   Note EAC's previous comments on the Government's rejection of the Brundtland definition of Sustainable Development, and the favouring of a more economic interpretation instead. See EAC's Thirteenth Report of 2003-04, The Sustainable Development Strategy :Illusion or Reality?, HC624, paragraph 16. Back

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