Ofgem, the energy regulator, have today unveiled their plan to decarbonise the UK energy industry by 2050. This follows on from the Government’s commitment last year which they reiterated at the recent election.
Getting to net zero will be absolutely critical to curbing climate change; however, many scientists believe that we actually need to get to net zero by 2030 to prevent a climate catastrophe. So, while a 2050 target is quicker than most other countries it could still be too little too late.
OFGEM’s plan focuses on:
- Building a system that supports the growth of renewables and ten million electric vehicles on our roads by 2030
- Quadrupling electricity generation by offshore wind
- Setting up an innovation fund to unlock innovative solutions to tackle climate change
The full report is available on the OFGEM website here
The report appears to answer savage criticism from the boss of ScottishPower, Keith Anderson, who last year accused the regulator of frustrating the UK’s electric vehicle rollout due to its “colossal disconnect” with Britain’s climate policies.
New OFGEM boss, Jonathan Brearley has said today that “Britain has come a long way. It has decarbonised faster than any other major economy, but we must go further, particularly on heat and transport.”
The program includes vast challenges particularly on transport where for example the UK currently has 39 million petrol and diesel vehicles that will need replacing. The 10 million target by 2030 is just a quarter of the current number. At this point, there will still likely be more than 30 million petrol and diesel vehicles still running, plus most boats and planes also running on fossil fuels.
Change will also require the removal of most if not all of the UK’s 20 million plus gas heating systems that then need replacing with electrical or possibly hydrogen based systems. There’s likely to be plenty of work for central heating engineers!