Prime Minister's 10-point green plan 'falls short'

In: Windfarms
18/11/2020

The UK Prime Minister has set out a ten point plan for a green industrial revolution and has pledged to mobilise £12 billion of government investment. Covering clean energy, transport, nature and innovative technologies, the Prime Minister’s blueprint aims to push the UK ahead in eradicating its contribution to climate change by 2050, particularly crucial in the run up to the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow next year.

At the centre of his blueprint are the UK’s industrial heartlands, including in the North East, Yorkshire and the Humber, West Midlands, Scotland and Wales, which will drive forward the green industrial revolution and build green jobs and industries of the future.

The Prime Minister’s ten points, which are built around the UK’s strengths, are:

  1. Offshore wind: Producing enough offshore wind to power every home, quadrupling how much we produce to 40GW by 2030, supporting up to 60,000 jobs.
  2. Hydrogen: Working with industry aiming to generate 5GW of low carbon hydrogen production capacity by 2030 for industry, transport, power and homes, and aiming to develop the first town heated entirely by hydrogen by the end of the decade.
  3. Nuclear: Advancing nuclear as a clean energy source, across large scale nuclear and developing the next generation of small and advanced reactors, which could support 10,000 jobs.
  4. Electric vehicles: Backing car manufacturing bases including in the West Midlands, North East and North Wales to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles, and transforming national infrastructure to better support electric vehicles.
  5. Public transport, cycling and walking: Making cycling and walking more attractive ways to travel and investing in zero-emission public transport of the future.
  6. Jet Zero and greener maritime: Supporting difficult-to-decarbonise industries to become greener through research projects for zero-emission planes and ships.
  7. Homes and public buildings: Making our homes, schools and hospitals greener, warmer and more energy efficient, whilst creating 50,000 jobs by 2030, and a target to install 600,000 heat pumps every year by 2028.
  8. Carbon capture: Becoming a world-leader in technology to capture and store harmful emissions away from the atmosphere, with a target to remove 10MT of carbon dioxide by 2030, equivalent to all emissions of the industrial Humber today.
  9. Nature: Protecting and restoring the UK's natural environment, planting 30,000 hectares of trees every year, whilst creating and retaining thousands of jobs.
  10. Innovation and finance: Developing technologies to reach these new energy ambitions and make the City of London the global centre of green finance.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: "Although this year has taken a very different path to the one we expected, I haven’t lost sight of our ambitious plans to level up across the country. My Ten Point Plan will create, support and protect hundreds of thousands of green jobs, whilst making strides towards net zero by 2050.

Our green industrial revolution will be powered by the wind turbines of Scotland and the North East, propelled by the electric vehicles made in the Midlands and advanced by the latest technologies developed in Wales, so we can look ahead to a more prosperous, greener future."

Despite a warm welcome from a number of government officials, the plan has come under fire from critics who outline the level of funding falls short to tackle the challenges the plan aims to address. The Labour party criticised Boris Johnson's new plan highlighting that two thirds of the funding has already been allocated.

Ed Miliband, former Labour leader and current Shadow Business and Energy Secretary, commented: "The funding in the Government's long-awaited 10-point plan doesn't remotely meet the scale of what's needed to tackle the unemployment emergency and climate emergency we are facing, and pales in comparison to the tens of billions committed by France and Germany. Only a fraction of the funding announced today is new. We don't need rebadged funding pots and reheated pledges, but an ambitious plan that meets the scale of the task we are facing and - crucially - creates jobs now. Labour called for the Government to bring forward £30bn capital investment over 18 months as part of a rapid stimulus package to support 400,000 new low-carbon jobs. Make no mistake – this announcement from government falls well short of what’s required."


He wasn't alone in his criticism. The Green Party's former leader and co-leader Caroline Lucas commented: “This is a shopping list, not a plan to address the climate emergency, and it commits only a fraction of the necessary resources.”


The announcement comes one month after the release of the Prime Minister's new plans to Build Back Greener, making the UK the world leader in clean wind energy – creating jobs, slashing carbon emissions and boosting exports.  Boris Johnson pledged that every UK home will be powered by electricity from offshore wind farms by 2030 and that £160m will be spent on ports and factories across the country to manufacture the next generation turbines.



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