Are we about to take a step in the right direction?! As this article in The Telegraph reports the Prime Minister’s energy strategy will support new energy projects through planning and look to reduce gas prices in the mid to long term and make the UK more self-sufficient in terms of energy.
The current situation in Ukraine has turned fossil fuel and energy markets on their heads. World leaders are finding themselves at a crossroads, should they be investing heavily in sourcing new fossil fuels and increasing production or looking to bolster and accelerate emerging green alternatives.
The UK Government’s latest commitments appear to be a turn towards a low carbon future. Boris Johnson’s energy strategy will make it harder for local communities to object to new energy projects – solar panels, wind turbines and nuclear power stations – being developed in their area.
The unveiling of the UK Energy Strategy has been long awaited, and may be much more ambitious due to the recent actions were taken by Russia which has highlighted the need for energy-independence and a reduced reliance on fossil fuels.
Included within Government plans is the aim to build eight nuclear reactors by 2050; carpet an area larger than Exmoor with solar panels; and support onshore wind by providing lower electricity bills for local residents. The combined results should lower the UK’s dependency on gas by 40% by 2030.
Supporters of the strategy outline that energy developers’ complaints about the planning process holding back renewable power are now being heard and action is taking place to limit the hurdles new energy projects face and amend planning rules to favour low carbon energy development.
However, concerns have been raised about the risks posed by a planning process that leans towards developers’ needs over local residents’ views; and the increased potential for projects to be rushed through without the right amount of consideration for the local environment and wildlife.