Pale green Budget

The Spring Budget has won neither sustained joy or gnashing of teeth, leaving the Opposition with few lines of attack, and the renewables sector with a handful of takeaways.

There will be some fresh funding for carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies, and, as predicted, nuclear has morphed into a sustainable energy source. Furthermore, Hunt used the Budget to emphasise the earlier competition to develop SMRs, noting: “Because the wind doesn’t always blow and the sun doesn’t always shine, even under the Conservatives, we will need another critical source of cheap, reliable energy and that is nuclear.”

However, it has no real major green ideas or funding ideas and continues the road to net-zero rather than creating a highway.

Responding to the Chancellor Jeremy Hunt’s Spring Budget, RenewableUK’s executive director of policy and engagement Ana Musat said: “Today’s Budget does not create the framework needed to mobilise investment and turn the UK into a clean energy superpower. It will not enable the renewable energy industry to build vital new projects much faster or grow supply chains. We need much bolder action to scale up far more rapidly, to boost Britain’s energy security and provide cheap power to consumers.

“Overall we need a much bigger response to match the incentives being offered to renewable energy developers by the US and the EU – this wasn’t forthcoming today, and we hope the Chancellor’s announcements later this month on the UK’s pathway to net-zero and energy security will remove the key fiscal and non-fiscal barriers to the growth of the renewables sector”.

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