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Britishvolt’s collapse signals economic disaster for Britain’s Net Zero plans

NZW statement

London, 17 January 2023 – After the much lauded battery start-up Britishvolt collapsed into administration, Net Zero Watch has reiterated its warning that the Government’s policy of green interventionism and Net Zero dogmatism is a recipe for economic and political disaster. 

Described as a ‘gigafactory’, the collapsed EV battery factory was meant to be a symbol of levelling-up and would show how a green “planned economy” could herald an industrial renaissance.

The then Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, claimed last year that “Britishvolt’s plan to build a new gigafactory in Northumberland [was] a strong testament to the UK’s place at the helm of the global green industrial revolution.” Those plans are now in utter disarray.

UK Government ministers had committed £100 million to the battery project, apparently without a sound business plan, because it aligned with official rhetoric on Net Zero. 

The company blamed Britain’s “ballooning energy costs” for its predicament, and its ultimate collapse.

In recent months, BMW has announced it is moving manufacturing of the electric Mini from the UK to China, where manufacturing is powered by cheap coal. Other carmakers plan to slash the number of electric vehicles they manufacture because rising prices and the spiralling cost of electricity makes them increasingly unaffordable for drivers.

 Dr Benny Peiser, Net Zero Watch’s director, said:

This fiasco was utterly foreseeable and was indeed foreseen by us and other analysts — but not by complacent ministers and incompetent civil servants. BMW’s China exodus and Britishvolt’s collapse won’t be the last casualties of the government’s green command and control economy.”