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26 January 2016

  |  CBI Press Team

Update

Business calls for clear leadership and stable energy policy

In an open letter to the Government business leaders – energy users, investors and suppliers – called for clear leadership and stable policy. The letter was first reported in the Times.

Image of Business calls for clear leadership and stable energy policy

In an open letter to the Government business leaders – energy users, investors and suppliers – called for clear leadership and stable policy. The letter was first reported in the Times.

Open letter – action on energy in 2016

Sir,
The way we power our economy is being transformed. Building on the ambition of the recent Paris Agreement, much more of our energy will come from renewable and other lower-carbon sources. New technologies will also change how we store and use the power they provide. This transition is being led by businesses, who have increased the UK’s use of renewable energy for our electricity supply from 11% to 25% in just three years. Companies are also investing to improve their energy efficiency, and to help consumers manage their electricity costs and reduce overall energy demand – installing smart meters in millions of homes across the UK.

But for business and household bill-payers, we need to make this transition while keeping costs affordable and our energy supply secure. UK industrial firms already pay higher electricity costs than EU competitors, and spare capacity on our grid is getting squeezed as we phase out older power stations. 

Getting the investment we need to address this requires clear leadership and stable policy from government. We need more of this in 2016.

To unlock investment, we need a clear long-term framework – so companies can plan for construction projects that will last into the next decade. To ensure we are delivering new low carbon capacity at an affordable cost for consumers, we need to make sure the market is open to all technologies, including new onshore wind developments, where they have local support. We also need to make sure we are investing in the capacity of UK supply chains to build on our expertise in existing and future technologies, from offshore wind to carbon capture and storage. And to ensure the shift to more intermittent renewable energy doesn’t affect security of supply for homes and businesses, we need to look at how we use technologies to help store electricity and manage peak-time demand, and support the development of new gas and nuclear capacity to help underpin our power grid. 

Finally, we also need an overhaul of complex regulations holding back investment in energy efficiency – so that the best intentions to support firms to reduce their energy use and carbon impact are not lost in bureaucratic ‘green tape’.


Co-signed by

 

Aggregate Industries- François Pétry, CEO

Amec Foster Wheeler - Ian McHoul, Interim Chief Executive

Andrew Scott – Mark Bowen, Managing Director

Aviva – Sir Adrian Montague CBE, Chairman

Bam Nuttall – Stephen Fox CBE, Chief Executive

Bio Group – Steve Sharratt OBE, Group Chief Executive  

BOC – Sue Graham Johnston, Managing Director, BOC UK, Ireland and Africa

Carillion – Richard Howson, Chief Executive

CBI – Carolyn Fairbairn, Director-General

GE – Mark Elborne, President & CEO, GE UK & Ireland

Infinis – Eric Machiels, Chief Executive

INEOS – Tom Crotty, Group Director

Intu Properties – Neil Sachdev, Non-Executive Director

Keen Venture Partners – Ben Verwaayen, KBE, Founding Partner and Chair of CBI Energy and Climate Change Board

Lloyds Banking Group– Tim Hinton, MD, Mid Markets & SME Banking

Renewable Energy Systems – Gavin McAlpine, Chairman

ScottishPower – Keith Anderson, Chief Corporate Officer

Tata Steel – Karl Koehler, Chief Executive Officer

Veolia – Estelle Brachlianoff, Senior Executive Vice-President – UK & Ireland

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