The forthcoming referendum on membership of the EU on 23 June has major implications for energy and climate policy, and the UK’s transition to a low carbon economy.
EU energy policy is progressive, long term and focused on an effective energy transition to a low carbon future. It has been shaped by input from member states including significant input from several UK Governments. This ensures that EU energy policy is not subject to change every UK electoral cycle, unlike much of UK domestic energy policy.
Yesterday’s news regarding the withdrawal of the £1 billion capital subsidy by a government who only six months ago were firmly committed to CCS as part of their election manifesto was a shock for many people across the energy industry. It was not announced as part of the 2015 spending review, but was part of the collateral damage of budget cuts at DECC which was quietly announced to the UK Stock Exchange at 3pm through a short statement of 56 words – equivalent to just three tweets.
Todays news that Drax have withdrawn from the White Rose CCS project because of “critical reversals” in government support raises inevitable questions about the future of CCS in the UK. Whilst both the Shell/ SSE Peterhead project and the Capture Power White Rose project are approaching the end of their FEED programmes, the news about Drax has highlighted that there is still some distance to go to reach Final Investment Decision (FID) on these projects. If these projects fail to go ahead, there are significant implications for CCS and UK carbon reduction efforts. This paper highlights the importance of successfully delivering these two projects.
As a management consultancy for the energy transition, our business is to have insight into the energy industry and its future evolution. Our insight comes from experience in the sector, an understanding of current and future energy challenges and an ability to take a fresh perspective on matters. This article explores the lessons that the energy industry can learn from the natural world.
Are fossil fuels the sub-prime assets of the future? The debate about the long term risk of investments in fossil fuel businesses is moving from a fringe moral debate initiated by the CarbonTracker team in 2011 into a mainstream investment risk debate. Recently, powerful interventions from Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, Energy Secretary Ed Davey and even former BP CEO John Browne have highlighted the issue. Climate change negotiations for Paris 2015 could be pivotal.