Business leaders, manufacturers and renewables associations this week unleashed a chorus of criticism at the government after a report by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) predicted that UK climate change policies would result in electricity costs rising twice as fast as in most other countries. The Confederation of British Industry warned that climate change policies were burdening big power users and said the BIS report was a “wake-up call”.

It described as “inadequate” a £250m fund under consultation to help energy-intensive industries with carbon reduction policy costs.

Manufacturers’ association EEF said climate change costs could drive investment out of the UK. It said the report backed up its claim that UK manufacturers paid more for their electricity than many overseas competitors.

The Renewable Energy Foundation said the BIS report showed that UK climate change policies were “expensive and damaging to energy-intensive companies ­compared to other major world economies”.

BIS estimated that climate change policies would raise electricity prices by £33/MWh by 2020.

This article first appeared in Utility Week’s print edition of 20 July 2012.

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