The prime minister said the UK would “become the world leader in low-cost clean power generation – cheaper than coal and gas”, comparing the UK’s resources in offshore wind to Saudi Arabia’s oil wealth.
“We believe that in 10 years’ time offshore wind will be powering every home in the country, with our target rising from 30 gigawatts to 40 gigawatts,” he will say. “Your kettle, your washing machine, your cooker, your heating, your plug-in electric vehicle – the whole lot of them will get their juice cleanly and without guilt from the breezes that blow around these islands.”The government has come under fire in recent months for failing to set out plans for a green recovery that would put the UK on track to meet its goal of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Apart from £3bn for insulating homes, there were no green measures in the Covid-19 recovery plan. No 10 said the pledge was the first step in a 10-point “Build Back Greener” plan, which the prime minister would set out later in the year and includes new targets and investment into industries, innovation and infrastructure.
Johnson will say that the government will invest £160m in manufacturing the next generation of turbines, including floating windmills capable of delivering 1GW of energy by 2030, over 15 times the current floating offshore volumes worldwide. Downing Street said the initial investment would rapidly create about 2,000 construction jobs and enable the sector to support up to 60,000 jobs directly and indirectly by 2030 in ports, factories and the supply chains….Johnson said the target would help the UK reach its target of net zero by 2050 – a target which has been criticised by campaigners as under-ambitious.
The boost for offshore wind was welcomed by green campaigners, who urged him to go further with his plans by providing incentives for electric vehicles and other low-carbon infrastructure….The announcement of the Build Back Greener plan is tentatively scheduled for November and is expected to follow the advice set out by the Committee on Climate Change, including support for the UK’s nascent clean hydrogen industry to help cut carbon emissions from homes and heavy industry.
This is a golden opportunity to point out to the Guardian or a local paper (and indirectly the government) how Carbon Fee and Dividend could make such plans easier to achieve without subsidies, and to namedrop CCL! Why not have a look at our advice on writing to the media and give it a go!