x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

UK lays out low-carbon blueprint

The UK is pressing ahead with plans to move towards a low-carbon economy.

During a week that has already featured several major renewable energy announcements, the UK government unfurled its blueprint for transition to a low-carbon economy. The detailed plan unveiled last week by Ed Miliband, the UK energy secretary, sets out the government's road map for cutting greenhouse gas emissions and tackling climate change. "Renewables, nuclear, clean fossil fuels, as this plan sets out, are the trinity of low-carbon and the future of energy in Britain," Mr Miliband told parliament. "To rise to the challenge will mean comprehensive changes in our economy and our society."

The measures are aimed at showing how Britain will its cut carbon emissions by 18 per cent in just over a decade, while complying with EU rules requiring it to get 15 per cent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020. The UK has already cut its output of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide by more than 20 per cent from 1990 levels, but has pledged to widen the reduction to 34 per cent by 2020. The initiative is part of Britain's contribution to a worldwide intergovernmental effort to limit the pace of climate change, and to hammer out an international carbon accord at a summit in Copenhagen this December.

A package of government incentives under the plan include GBP405 million (Dh2.44 billion) in funding for low-carbon industries, GBP120m to support offshore wind farms, GBP60m for investment in wave and tidal power, and up to GBP6m in funding for smart grid initiatives that would help Britain use electricity resources more efficiently. tcarlisle@thenational.ae