Local leaders call for green spending boost

UK100 has called for Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, to pledge £5bn towards renewable energy and energy efficiency as it launched a report.

On 13 July, it launched its Accelerating the Rate of Investment in Local Energy Projects report, having published a summary on 30 June. Sponsored by Siemens UK with support from BEIS and EDF, it set out how a switch to renewable generation requires a “balanced energy system” combining a mix of large-scale power generation with local decentralised energy systems. It claims that by investing £5bn in local energy projects, over £100bn of schemes could be unlocked, including £40bn for energy efficiency, and over 300,000 jobs created in the local energy sector in the process.

The report, which was presented to Energy Minister, Kwasi Kwarteng on its launch, also calls on government to establish a Net Zero Development Bank to finance schemes to drive a net zero recovery.

Polly Billington, Director of UK100, said: “If ministers are to meet their manifesto promise on energy efficiency in our homes, which are some of the leakiest in Europe, they need to kick-start a renewable revolution. This would help hard-pressed consumers save on their fuel bills, support hundreds of thousands of jobs and protect the environment. £5bn now would unlock £100bn to rescue the UK economy and deliver on the Prime Minister’s ambitions of levelling up and meeting Net Zero. The Chancellor’s statement, while welcome, should have had far more front-loaded investment.”