Written evidence from Mike Vernon (HSR
The strategy for HSR appears to be co-dependent upon
UK energy policy and this raises a specific concern re development
of HS2 as set out in the consultation paper/economic case.
Having reviewed the technical papers there are concerns
The published costings for the construction and running
of HS2 do not fully take into account the impact of the government's
policies designed to meet the UK's carbon emissions reduction
targets. In particular, they do not include any allowance for
the impact of the introduction of the recently announced Carbon
Price Floor measures from 1 April 2013.
Furthermore, it is felt that the complexity of the
range of UK and EU measures designed to encourage the introduction
of low-carbon generation technologies may mask a more serious
underlying problem. This problem is the uncertainty about the
supply of electricity in the medium term brought about by the
necessity to achieve emission reduction targets. Achievement of
these targets is likely to result in widespread closures of fossil
fuelled power plants before the end of 2015. The potential reduction
in supply and consequent increase in the price of electricity
would affect all aspects of the construction and running of HS2.
It is felt that this uncertainty about electricity supply and
price should be taken into account in the costing of the project.
The government is committed to full compliance with
EU Directive 2001/80/EC Limitation of Pollutants Directive. This
in effect states that unless the UK's major fossil fuelled power
plants conform to EU emission standards they will have to cease
operating, which could mean that by 31 December 2015 25% of our
largest fossil fuelled power plants will have to shut down. The
government has also stated that all but one of the UK's nuclear
power plants (Sizewell B) will be shut down by 2025. The likely
consequence of these closures would be an upward pressure on electricity
prices, and until the introduction of significant levels of low-carbon
generation capacity, fossil fuels will continue be provide the
bulk of UK electricity generation. The carbon price support mechanism
will therefore continue to inflate electricity prices throughout
the construction period for HS2, and this should be factored in
to the estimated costs of the project.
it be confirmed that there are specific plans in place for government
to increase the supply of energy and therefore support the increased
demand for power arising from investment in HSR?
revised cost estimates be published in the near future to take
into account the effects of energy price increases resulting from
(a) carbon tax increases and (b) possible supply constraints?
the rising costs of energy are fully reflected in the business
model for HS2, what impact does this have on ticket prices -or
the requirement for additional government subsidyand therefore
the achievement in the growth of passenger numbers forecast in
the business case [which in turn underpins the case for HS2].
|By 2015, 25% of the largest fossil fuel plants are planned to close, as part of the UK Government's commitment towards reducing carbon emissions.
||EU Directive 2001/80/EC Limitation of Pollutants Directive [replaces DIR 88/609/EEC]
|Also government has also stated that all but one of our nuclear power plants [Sizewell B will be shut down by 2025] [see attached list of plant closures]: and as yet there are no plans in place to replace these plants.
||See attachment 1|
|The UK government has committed to reducing carbon footprint and has announced the introduction of a carbon floor pricing policy wef. April 2013, which will have the impact of increasing the price of power production from fossil fuels.
||HM Treasury HMRC Document/Carbon Floor Price ConsultationThe Government Response: March 2011 pdf]
|Transportation within the UK in general contributed 24% of all CO2 emissions in 2007.
||BlueSpace Thinking Ltd April 2010Review of High speed RailHS2 Proposals
|The business case for HS2 is based on the premise of incentivising a substantial increase in growth of long distance travel within Englandspecifically, from several major cities into London - through subsidised travel on the new HSR network.
||Consultation Document on HS2|
|The new system will uses more power than a conventional inter-city train and so must increase our CO2 emissions significantly. The technical report identifies that a 3.5 minute time saving between Birmingham and London achieved through higher speed adds an additional 23% to the energy cost for the journey. So as with other forms of transport, the very high speeds proposed in HS2 require disproportionately more energy use.
||HS2 Traction Energy Modelling Report 31/12/2009
|The operating costs presented in the business case are "high level" and the technical report states that more work is required on in-depth costing analysis. No cost escalations have been factored in on original 12.3 billion pound costs for London to Birmingham route. All costs are based on 2009 figures.
||Page 4 s 1.1.5 Cost and Risk Model Tech Annex 0.4