This note has been produced in response to the Energy
and Climate Change Committee's Report into "low carbon technologies
in a green economy", published in March 2010.
The Government very much welcomes the Energy and
Climate Change Committee's focus on this area and is grateful
to the Committee and to all those who gave evidence in the preparation
of this report.
As set out in the Coalition Programme, this Government
believes that climate change is one of the gravest threats we
face - one that requires urgent action both at home and abroad.
The creation of a low carbon, eco-friendly economy is therefore
a key priority for the Government. This report is a vital contribution
to the debate on how the transition to that economy should be
The Government strongly agrees with many of the recommendations
of the report. In particular, we agree that low carbon technologies
can play a vital role not just in meeting the UK's climate change
and energy security targets, but also in contributing to economic
growth. We share the Committee's view that it is essential to
ensure the market framework incentivises investment in the development
and deployment of new technologies and infrastructure. And we
agree that energy efficiency offers a huge opportunity for the
UK to reduce its energy use and to stimulate jobs across Britain's
I am pleased to note that the Government is already
making progress towards its objectives in this area. In
particular, we have already announced a package of measures to
stimulate investment in the UK economy, including:
- publication of Treasury
proposals to reform the Climate Change Levy to provide more
certainty and support to the carbon price.
- undertaking fundamental electricity market reform
to ensure we can deliver security of supply, cost effective investment
in low carbon energy, and fair competition.
- supporting the EU to adopt an emissions target
that represents a real incentive for action: a 30 per cent reduction
- developing detailed proposals on the creation
of a Green Investment Bank to be set out following the Spending
- establishing a Green Deal for households, business
and the public sector through legislation in the Energy Security
and Green Economy Bill, to help individuals and organisations
invest in energy efficiency improvements that can pay for themselves
from the savings in energy bills. The Government will also continue
to progress work on creating green financial products to provide
individuals with opportunities to invest in the infrastructure
necessary to support the green economy.
The Coalition Programme also identifies a number
of key technologies which are fundamental to the development of
the low carbon economy, some of which were identified by the Committee
- including offshore wind, carbon capture and storage, marine
energy, and anaerobic digestion.
Coalition Government Response
As the inquiry into low carbon technologies and a
green economy was carried out in 2009 the recommendations relate,
to a significant extent, to the policies of the previous administration.
In order to act in the spirit of the Committee's desire for swift
action, rather than respond to each of the 60 recommendations
in turn, we propose to set out the Government's initial actions
to support the development and deployment of low carbon technologies
in the economy in the Annual Energy Statement (AES), which will
be published this month.
The AES will cover the key issues identified by the
Committee, and will focus in particular on saving energy and supporting
vulnerable consumers; secure low carbon energy; managing our energy
legacy; and driving action on climate change at home and abroad.
It will also set out our 2050 pathways analysis, which the Committee
was particularly keen to see.
We very much agree with the Committee that this is
one of the most significant challenges facing Government, and
are determined to ensure that the UK seizes the economic benefits
of the transition to a low carbon economy, and look forward to
working with you to achieve that goal.