Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: Renewable Energy Generation

Mike Wood: What progress he has made on promoting renewable energy generation.

 

Chris Skidmore Vice-Chair, Conservative Party, Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Universities and Science) (Joint with the Department for Education)

Last year, renewable generation provided a third of our electricity and, as I have stated, over the Easter weekend we went 90 hours without any coal generation. Both were new records. Our next contracts for difference allocation round will open next month. We are driving down the cost of clean technologies and investing £2.5 billion in low-carbon innovation.

 

Anna McMorrin Labour, Cardiff North

Far from leading the way, the UK has plummeted to the bottom of SolarPower Europe’s league table of 20 world markets in solar, and we are one of the few EU countries not providing any support at all to solar power. Not only has solar had all support removed prematurely but it is being hit by wave after wave of fresh damage, making it harder to meet our climate targets. Will the Secretary of State or the Minister meet me to discuss the damaging net effect of the Government’s policies on solar and on the transition to clean energy?

 

Chris Skidmore Vice-Chair, Conservative Party, Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Universities and Science) (Joint with the Department for Education)

I am sure that the Minister for Energy and Climate Change will be happy to meet the hon. Lady, but as I have stated, photovoltaic is a UK success story. We have seen 830,000 installations, and I have mentioned the smart export guarantee tariff that is being designed. We want to ensure that this will be able to generate profit for those companies, and that we continue to be able to lead Europe on this.

 

Mike Wood: Eliminating net carbon emissions by 2050 is both ambitious and achievable. Does my hon. Friend agree that the progress made over the past decade demonstrates that, where there is the political will, it is possible to reduce emissions while supporting economic prosperity?

 

Chris Skidmore Vice-Chair, Conservative Party, Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Universities and Science) (Joint with the Department for Education)

Absolutely. We need to deliver ambitious reductions in emissions, considering our long-term targets in the light of the latest science. That is why we have asked the Committee on Climate Change for advice on our long-term targets, including that net zero target. The committee’s advice will be published this Thursday, and we will consider it carefully.