23 March 2017
Molly Scott Cato, Green MEP for the South West, has accused the government of failing consumers and the environment over energy policy. The accusation follows new projections from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) which estimate that onshore wind and solar will be as cheap or cheaper than gas by 2020 . BEIS now acknowledge an increased role for renewables, particularly due to potential improvements in battery storage. Molly Scott Cato said:
“Having hammered the renewables sector for ideological reasons, the government now discovers that wind and solar are set to become the cheapest ways to generate electricity.
“Government energy policy supposedly seeks to deliver secure, affordable and low carbon energy. They have failed on all three counts. But in particular we now see that by failing to pursue a transition to renewable energy they have missed the opportunity to provide electricity for the consumer at the lowest cost.”
Two years ago, Dr Scott Cato commissioned a report which concluded that the South West could generate over 100% of its energy needs from a mix of renewable sources and create 122,000 new jobs through a renewable energy transition . She said:
“The UK has some of the best potential for renewable energy generation in Europe. It is clear that renewable energy should form the backbone of our economic strategy post-Brexit. This will not only be good for the economy and for creating thousands of new jobs, it would, by the government’s own belated acknowledgement, be good for consumers too.”