New Energy Bill ‘Lacks Focus’

Whilst still officially unannounced the Coalition government’s Energy Bill has already begun to make waves amongst the commercial energy industry, after more of it’s details were made public this week.  The Energy Bill is much-awaited by the entire energy market as it is set to lay out the way in which Britain will meet it’s energy needs over the coming decades, with key topics like decarbonisation, renewables, subsidies and business energy all set to be addressed.

However, the government bill’s key points have already made their way into the public domain, and already it has come under fire for a failure to focus on energy efficiency.

When the Coalition government announced the bill earlier this year, the mission statement was clear: ““With a fifth of the UK’s electricity generating capacity due to close this decade, reforms are needed to provide certainty to investors to bring forward £110 billion investment in new infrastructure to keep the lights on and continue the shift to a diverse, low carbon economy as cheaply as possible.”

However, the Energy Bill has become something of a time-bomb in the energy industry; the keystone of the bill will allow energy companies to charge households extra on their bills to fund decarbonisation – but only until the end of the decade.

The agreement is designed to funnel around an extra £7bn out of UK homeowners for the next 7 years – a carrot and stick to ensure an estimated £110bn investment made by energy companies into green energy is seen through to completion in 2020.

Critics, however, have attacked the notion – with several saying that the increase in prices will send prices ‘spiraling out of control’. Instead, many agree that the investment should be being made into energy efficiency rather than increasing costs and quantity – a sore point after an energy efficiency strategy, published by the government last week, was immediately labelled “disappointing”.