Ed Davey, the Energy and Climate Change Secretary, was defiant today in trying to combat media stories that new government policy would result in higher home energy bills. The accusations came following speculation that the government’s landmark Energy Bill, setting out long term energy policy, would raise household bills by around £178 a year due to the increased financial support of low carbon and renewable energy sources. £2.3bn have already been set aside this year for supporting the growth of low-carbon energy – acting to reduce the UK’s reliance on fossil fuels.
Speculation arose based on a DECC report published last year that indicated that household energy bills would rise in-line with government support of renewable generation projects. However, DECC were quick to combat the media stories on the basis that the numbers had been used in a “disingenuous” way. It turns out that as a result of renewables financial support that, whilst electricity bills, they will only do so by an estimated £68 pounds per year by 2030.
Secretary Ed Davey was also eager to reiterate that whilst it easy to try and join the dots and look at increases in cost that derive from such investments, many in the media were ignoring the fact that improvements in energy efficiency – that will hopefully come as a result of government policy – will actually offset many of the costs involved.
The transition to a low carbon, greener economy is a big change – the gravity of the Energy Bill is testament to this. But it is always important to consider the wider implications of such policies. Confidence and innovation in the energy efficiency market reflect the justified optimism that investment in a greener economy is rewarded by stimulating significant growth. The ability of such growth to offset admittedly large investment should not be under-estimated. Particularly when we consider that a greener, more energy efficient Britain is not just an aspiration – it is a necessity.