All Change: UK Free To Go Nuclear And Use Fracking

  • Date: 23/01/14
  • Ben Spencer, Daily Mail

All change: Britain will no longer have to build more wind and solar farms after the EU scrapped rules that bind countries to renewable energy targets. Fracking can now be developed as a major energy source.

The EU has scrapped rules that bind countries to renewable energy targets, lifting demands that Britain build more wind and solar farms.

The change paves the way for the Government to expand its use of nuclear power and develop fracking as a major energy source.

Britain will still have to provide 15 per cent of its energy from renewable power by 2020, but after that there will be no target. Instead, the EU as a whole will have to produce 27 per cent of its energy from renewables by 2030.

The policy is a defeat for major European nations including Germany, France and Italy which had demanded a target to drive the development of wind and solar power.

They were opposed by Britain, which argued for a broad target in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, leaving individual countries to decide themselves how they would meet it.

The European Commission set an EU-wide target of a 40 per cent cut by 2030, but that is less ambitious than Britain’s aim of 50 per cent by 2025.

Energy Secretary Ed Davey said the new rules provide flexibility in tackling emissions in a cost-effective way ‘so that British consumers aren’t paying over the odds to go green’.

‘This is a really good package,’ he said. ‘It’s what we’ve been arguing for.’

Energy Secretary Ed Davey said the new rules ensure Britain isn’t paying over the odds to go green

He said it allowed Britain to use a mix of energy sources, including nuclear, wind, solar and, potentially, shale gas.[...]

The UK is currently on a building drive to meet the existing target of 15 per cent of energy output by renewable sources by 2020. It stands at less than 5 per cent.

There are currently 120 solar farms of more than ten acres and the number will more than double this year. Green taxes on energy bills will more than double by the end of the decade, according to Npower, one of Britain’s biggest suppliers.

Benny Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, a think tank that is sceptical of climate change, welcomed the move. ‘Today is a big day in Brussels as the EU has begun the gradual process of rolling back its bankrupting climate and green energy policies,’ he said.

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