The general election must deliver a green Christmas

1st November 2019 | Commercial Energy

The UK Parliament made history legislating for “net zero emissions” by 2050, but voters think politicians need to do even more to tackle climate change. Alistair Phillips-Davies, Chief Executive of SSE writes of his hopes that the political verdict on 12 December leads to a “green Christmas”.

A new Government should go even further in zero carbon regulation though, by changing the regulator Ofgem’s remit to have net zero at its core, empowering a willing regulator to orientate around creating a net zero UK. Ministers could do the same with the FCA and Ofwat and others too. The Advent calendar is about to get a political makeover with six weeks of campaigning ahead of the first December election in a century.

General Election

It’s set to be Brexit dominated, but I think there is an even bigger issue that voters are rightly concerned about: climate change. It is one of the few issues where we’ve seen cross-party support for action and now we need clear delivery plans for the country with government, business and the investment community all working together.

Companies like ours are already investing billions in the infrastructure, jobs and supply chain to deliver a low carbon economy: but we want to do more. The good news is there’s no Santa wish list required: we can make huge progress within the framework we have, with greater ambition and focus. Firstly, whilst the UK has had the wind its decarbonisation sails because it made a bold move to put a high cost on carbon to drive low carbon investments, the job isn’t done yet. A new Government should maintain its robust approach to putting a price on carbon. Certainty and stability are needed quickly on the Carbon Price Support (CPS) rate for April 2021 and beyond.

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