Energy minister John Hayes said today that the UK's decarbonisation and renewables targets were "most ambitious", and that "adequate capacity" was a critical goal.

Speaking at a Westminster debate the minister said that a meeting with energy firms yesterday, his first day in office, had illustrated how the proposed capacity market divided both “the sector and the House”. But he said that debate “needs to take place if we are going to get certainty and predictability”.

Hayes was responding to a report from the Energy and Climate Change Committee on security of supply. He said demand reduction – or energy efficiency – was another “critical” element of security of supply. The minister said the energy efficiency deployment office (EEDO) within his department would outline that strategy before the end of this year.

Maintaining supplies without disruption, and securing the investment to do so was the “central aim” of the department of energy and climate change (Decc) said Hayes, before noting the importance of affordability, decarbonisation and renewables. He added that Decc’s “vision” was for renewables, low carbon generation, and fossil fuels with carbon capture and storage to compete on price.

Committee chair Tim Yeo thanked the minister for his headline responses, before asking for “energy policy that is made by Decc, not the Treasury”.

Click here to watch the session.