Government climate change targets will put £500 on the average family’s fuel bill within four years, a study warns today. The report warns that the political elite’s obsession with renewable energy will damage Britain’s competitiveness without necessarily doing anything to tackle climate change.
It suggests that the Coalition’s drive to cut greenhouse gases will add £10billion to fuel bills by 2015 – equal to almost £500 per household.
Dr Richard Wellings, of the Institute of Economic Affairs, says: ‘It is clear the Government’s current plans will impose severe burdens on both business and households yet will fail to make a significant difference to the climate.’
He accuses senior politicians on all sides of seizing on the green agenda despite the ‘high level of scientific uncertainty that still surrounds the issue of climate change’.
Dr Wellings cites official figures suggesting that building thousands of wind turbines and connecting them to the National Grid is set to cost £100billion over the next decade.
There is a ‘significant risk’ that the final bill will be higher still, he says in an essay that is included in a new book on centre-Right thinking, The Future of Conservatism, which was featured in the Daily Mail on Monday.
It suggests that the Government’s target of cutting carbon emissions by at least a third by 2020 and 80 per cent by 2050, is motivated more by ideology than rational thinking.
Warning: The report says that the political elite’s obsession with renewable energy will damage Britain’s competitiveness without necessarily doing anything to tackle climate change
David Cameron has pledged to make the Coalition the ‘greenest government ever’.
The study warns that the ‘monumental scale’ of the investment needed to switch Britain’s energy generation will ‘crowd out’ business investment in other areas.
It suggests there is a risk of ‘carbon leakage’ where energy intensive industries quit Britain and move to developing countries – taking jobs away from the UK without cutting carbon emissions.
‘What is the point of Britain sacrificing her economic recovery on the altar of climate change when, according to some estimates, China is opening two coal power plants every week?’ the report asks.