Whitehall calls for energy investment
A surge of investment in new energy sources will be needed to ensure our energy security and reduce reliance on fossil fuels in the decades ahead, Energy Secretary Chris Huhne has warned.
He said: 'I'm fed up with the stand-off between advocates of renewables and of nuclear which means we have neither. We urgently need investment in new and diverse energy sources to power the UK.
'We'll need renewables, new nuclear, fossil fuels with CCS, and the cables to hook them all up to the Grid as a large slice of our current generating capacity shuts down. The market needs certainty to make this investment happen, and we are determined to clear every obstacle in the way of this programme.'
As a result, he said, the Government was setting out the UK's energy need which would help guide the planning process, 'so that if sound proposals come forward in sensible places, they will not face unnecessary hold-ups'.
Mr Huhne said he was also making clear that new nuclear developments would be free to contribute as much as possible with the onus on developers to pay for the clean-up.
The Government's consultation on the coalition's revised draft national policy statements on energy reveals expectations that more than half the new energy generating capacity built in the UK by 2025 to come from renewable sources.
'A significant proportion of the remainder will come from low carbon sources such as nuclear and fossil fuels with carbon capture and storage,' according to a Government statement
Meanwhile, the Government has scrapped the controversial Severn Tidal Power scheme. It said this could cost more than £30 billion, 'making it high cost and high risk in comparison to other ways of generating electricity'.
Mr Huhne added: 'There is no strategic case at this time for public funding of a scheme to generate energy in the Severn estuary. Other low carbon options represent a better deal for taxpayers and consumers.
'However, with a rich natural marine energy resource, world leading tidal energy companies and universities, and the creation of the innovative Wave Hub facility, the area can play a key role in supporting the UK's renewable energy future.'
18 October 2010