Policy

Editor's picks

The debate over the imbalance of policy costs and taxation between electricity and gas bills is ramping up as the Treasury investigates how net zero should be paid for. As part of our Countdown to COP campaign, David Blackman looks at the arguments for change alongside concerns that targeting gas bills would hit the fuel poor hardest.
Analysis
One of the next Holyrood government’s first acts of the following May’s Scottish Parliament elections should be to make energy and net zero a Cabinet level portfolio, a trade body has urged.
News
The first official statistics on the rollout of the Green Homes Grant have laid bare the sluggish pace, with just 2,777 measures installed over the past five months – only 12 per cent of which were low-carbon heat.
News

Featured

The principle of no customer being left behind in the shift to a smarter, more flexible energy system is hard to argue with. However, some experts believe that in the short-term a just transition is just impossible. As part of our Countdown to COP campaign, James Wallin examines different pathways to fairness – from ensuring the most vulnerable benefit first to the introduction of non-participant tariffs.
Analysis
A long-awaited report outlining recommendations designed to strengthen the UK’s competition regime has been cautiously welcomed by industry observers but described as lacking in detail. The Power to the People report by Conservative MP John Penrose has a heavy focus on streamlining regulatory processes and creating further competition where possible. It also calls for measures introduced in insurance to tackle 'loyalty penalties' to be extended to energy.
News
The surprise twist in the Energy White Paper was its embrace of the idea of auto-switching. David Blackman looks at how this and other key planks of the paper landed with the sector, and why it came out of the blue.
Analysis

Latest in Policy

Yorkshire Water has published ideas for investment and regulatory reform to allow the sector to be more flexible in its PR24 business plans and rise to the challenges of climate change and population growth. Utility Week discusses the company's proposal with its director of corporate affairs, Richard Emmott.
News
Rishi Sunak has allocated around £100 million of new cash for testbed energy projects in a Budget that has otherwise been branded a “missed opportunity” to take forward the Prime Minister’s green recovery plan.
News
The director general (DG) for energy transformation and clean growth at the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has stepped down, with his role split into two, one of which will be based in Manchester, Utility Week has learnt.
News
National Grid has said it will accept most of RIIO2 final determinations for its electricity and gas transmission businesses but will submit a technical appeal on the cost of equity and the outperformance wedge to the Competition and Markets Authority. It said the final determination for the Electricity System Operator will be accepted in full.
News
The energy sector must learn lessons from the smart meter rollout when implementing technical standards for future smart home energy technologies, industry observers have warned. A recent roundtable hosted by DevicePilot, a service monitoring platform for connected devices, discussed the future of the home energy market, which innovations are set to have the biggest impact and what effect this will have on the UK’s net zero goals. Several attendees reflected on how the smart meter rollout has panned out and offered their thoughts on what can be learned as homes adopt smart technologies.
News
In our latest review of sector coverage across the national newspapers, there is continued speculation of appeals to Ofgem’s RIIO2 final determinations by gas and transmission companies. Meanwhile, Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund is reported to be considering selling its stake in Thames Water. There is also coverage of government plans to force energy retailers to switch customers on to lower tariffs.
News
The Green Homes Grant (GHG) should have been the first step on the green recovery. But, six months on from its launch, the project is in disarray and there are reports it could be scrapped altogether. David Blackman examines what went wrong and what lessons there are for the next wave of decarbonisation policy.
Analysis
Eon UK chief executive Michael Lewis outlines his thoughts on the progress of the Green Homes Grant scheme. Lewis believes more funding for the scheme's Local Authority Delivery (LAD) element could help with delivering further demand. Elsewhere Lewis discusses Eon's own response to the scheme, revealing that the company is creating more jobs to manage the thousands of LAD projects it has secured.
Opinion
Building out the current pipeline of 14GW of new combined-cycle gas turbines risks stranding £9 billion of assets, Carbon Tracker has claimed in a new report. The climate change think tank said the 15GW of coal and nuclear plants that are due to close by 2025 could already be replaced more cheaply with a portfolio of clean energy technologies and the savings are set to grow substantially over the coming years as costs continue to fall.
News
Almost 70 per cent of people are in support of a carbon tax that protects lower income households from price increases, research from the Zero Carbon Campaign has found. Alongside the results of an Opinium survey of 2,000 UK adults, the campaign is launching a petition calling on the government to introduce charges on carbon emissions.
News
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