The UK Low Carbon Transition Plan includes renewables push

The government has published its plans to move the UK onto a permanent low carbon footing and to maximise economic opportunities, growth and jobs.

The UK Low Carbon Transition Plan plots out how the UK will meet the cut in emissions set out in the Budget of 34% on 1990 levels by 2020.

The plan sees the introduction of the Office for Renewable Energy Deployment to speed up the growth of renewables in the UK. There will also be measures to speed up planning decisions on renewables.

People will be encouraged to make their homes greener by ‘Pay as you save’ packages that allow the energy savings to pay for upfront energy efficiency improvements.

A clean energy cashback initiative, the Feed in Tariff scheme, will allow people and businesses to be paid for generating their own electricity from April 2010, with a similar scheme for heat to be introduced in April 2011.

Measures have also been proposed to boost the offshore wind industry, wave and tidal energy as well as geothermal energy.

The Transition Plan aims to keep the overall impact on the consumer to a minimum. Today’s plan will not increase average energy bills by 2015, compared to now. By 2020, the impact of all climate change policies, both existing and new, will be to add, on average, an additional 8% - or £92 - to today’s household bills.

The Transition Plan outlines a transformation in infrastructure and jobs. By 2020:

  • More than 1.2 million people will be in green jobs
  • 7 million homes will enjoy pay-as-you-save home energy makeovers, and more than 1.5 million households will be supported to produce their own clean energy
  • 40% of electricity will be from low carbon sources, from renewables, nuclear and clean coal
  • The UK will be importing half the amount of gas that it otherwise would.

Energy and climate change secretary Ed Miliband said: “This is a transition plan for Britain, a route-map to 2020, with carbon savings expected across every sector and a carbon budget assigned to every government department alongside its financial budget.

“Renewables, nuclear and clean fossil fuels are the trinity of low carbon and the future of energy in Britain. Under our plans we will get 40% of our electricity from low carbon energy by 2020 and more in the years afterwards."