energy

Jim Pickard

The Tory MP running this week’s by-election campaign in Corby was facing awkward questions tonight after appearing to admit he had given support to the campaign of a potential rival candidate.

Chris Heaton-Harris, who has campaigned vociferously against onshore wind farms, was secretly recorded saying he had encouraged an anti-wind farm candidate, journalist James Delingpole, to enter the race against his own party.

In the film, he tells an undercover Greenpeace campaigner – posing as someone from a fictional anti-wind group – that he“actually essentially suggested to him (Delingpole) he did it”. Read more >>

Jim Pickard

If all low-carbon energy is given a public subsidy then has nuclear power been subsidised? You might have thought so.

But Chris Huhne insisted yesterday that this was not the case. Read more >>

There have already been some noises off between the UK government and the green energy industry over the green investment bank, the government’s proposed investment vehicle for funding clean energy projects. Apart from anything, many in the sector simply don’t think the £1bn promised by Chris Huhne, the energy secretary, is enough. Read more >>

Here at the CBI’s climate change summit, most of the anger towards government has centred on the changes to the carbon reduction commitment (CRC), which has seen money originally earmarked for businesses with good environmental performances going to the Treasury instead. The BBC’s Roger Harrabin summed up the feeling in the room when he described it as the government “nicking your CRC dividend”.

So business leaders are relieved to hear Chris Huhne, the energy secretary, make some concessions today. Here’s what he said:

Today we have published a UK-wide consultation on delaying the start of Phase II of CRC. This means that participants won’t need to register for Phase II until 2013.

 Read more >>

Jim Pickard

David Cameron, in his original incarnation as Tory leader, was an advocate of the green agenda; cycling everywhere, visiting the Arctic (albeit by plane) and fixing a wind turbine to the roof of his west London home. (No matter that he was forced to take it down due to complex planning issues).

Yet the new prime minister has just axed a major scheme (the “Low Carbon Buildings Programme”) that gave grants for households and companies to put solar panels or wind turbines on their premises. So far it has helped 20,000. Read more >>