In this first weekly readers’ Q&A session of 2011, Chris Huhne, the UK energy secretary, answers your electricity-market related questions.
In the first of two posts, he addresses the limits of feed-in tariffs, what will happen to the renewables obligation and how to keep green jobs in the UK.
In the second post, published above, he discusses ths cost of emissions targets, the chances of another oil shock and what should happen to the “big six” power companies.
Next in the hotseat is Jack Gerard, the head of the American Petroleum Institute, who will be answering your questions next Friday, January 14th. Send in your questions for consideration by the end of Sunday, January 9th – to firstname.lastname@example.org.
But for now, over to Chris:
The director general of the CBI, the British business lobby group, has been outlining this morning his vision of where exactly the UK business sector is in terms of meeting its climate change commitments.
Speaking at the CBI’s climate change summit in London, Lambert made a fairly downbeat assessment of what has been achieved over the past three years. And he had two simple messages for UK policymakers: be consistent and stop hyping ‘green’ jobs.
The second of these messages comes as something of a surprise from a spokesman for British industry, which has been told to expect a major boom from the creation of jobs related to tackling climate change.
The oil industry is not the sexiest place to be right now. The combined effect of the BP oil spill, competition from the highly-paid financial services sector and the emphasis from governments around the world on creating green jobs has left some in the industry worrying about how they can continue to attract top talent.
Oil companies are now rumoured to be offering staff huge incentives to come and work for them, especially if they are working in the field: DVDs, games, food, drinks, you name it they get it. Understandably so if the alternative for a talented science grad is to work in the air-conditioned offices of a bank or with a small start-up working at the cutting edge of green technology.