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Industry News Roundup November 2019

Friday 29/11 – It is Fuel Poverty Awareness Day. The government announces the updated carbon price for the EU Emissions Trading System beginning on 1 January 2020 as £21.93. E. ON announces that it is to cut thousands of jobs from npower as part of a restructuring process. Crown Estate Scotland launches its draft 2020-23 Corporate Plan consultation.

Thursday 28/11 – Government statistics show that renewables’ share of electricity generation hit 35.5% in Q219, up from 32% in Q218. Labour launches its Green Transformation Fund manifesto document, saying a Labour government will set a target to plant 2bn trees by 2040. European Parliament approves a resolution declaring a climate and environmental emergency. In an open letter addressed to European Environment and Climate Ministers, Ørsted, Enel, EDF, Iberdrola, SSE, Statkfraft and Verbund called for climate neutrality by 2050 and for the EU to raise the 2030 target for greenhouse-gas reduction to at least 55%.

Wednesday 27/11 – The SNP promises a net zero target of 2045 and for oil and gas revenue to go into a green transition fund if it leads the Scottish government following the 12 December General Election. Elexon publishes a white paper of recommendations to streamline code change. Centrica and National Car Parks announced a joint project to make charging more conducive for drivers and new novel methods of charging for commercial fleets and taxis in public spaces.

Tuesday 26/11 – A new report from WindEurope recommends that the UK should aim for 80GW of offshore wind by 2040. The UN’s Emissions Gap report finds that greenhouse gas emissions have risen 1.5% per year since 2009. Thrive Renewables announces it has acquired a new wind farm site near Girvan, South Ayrshire in Scotland.

Monday 25/11 – The Scottish Green Party publishes its 2019 General Election manifesto, promising action to reduce emissions by 80% by 2030. A consortium led by Mitsubishi Corporation acquires Eneco for €4.1bn (£3.5bn). National Grid ESO, Lightsource BP and UKPN use solar at night to balance the grid.

Friday 22/11 – National Grid ESO as the EMR Delivery Body publishes the prequalification registers for the upcoming Capacity Market auctions – this guarantees GB’s security of electricity supply. UK Steel criticises Ofgem’s TCR decision, which will “worsen the business environment for UK steelmaking and energy intensive industries.”

Thursday 21/11 – Labour promises to nationalise energy networks and the supply arms of the “Big Six”, as well as introduce a windfall tax on oil companies. International non-profits The Climate Group and CDP publish a report which has found that 75 states and regions from around the world are generating 45% of their electricity from renewable sources.

Wednesday 20/11 – The Liberal Democrats promise a net zero target of 2045 and a new Department for Climate Change and Natural Resources. Ofgem publishes its Targeted Charging Review (TCR), revealing that residual charges will be levied entirely on demand. Renewables groups respond, saying that this will make reaching net zero more difficult to achieve.

Tuesday 19/11 – The Green Party promises £100bn a year spent on tackling climate change and a net zero target of 2030. The Energy Networks Association calls on the next government to take practical action to decarbonise heat, maintain support for a smarter energy system and outline a more detailed transport plan.

Monday 18/11 – Speaking on Radio 4’s Today Programme, Shadow International Trade Secretary Barry Gardiner appears to announce that Labour’s previous aim to achieve net zero by 2030 has been scaled back. The CBI releases its 2019 General Election manifesto, calling on all political parties to use the 2020s to accelerate the deployment of low carbon electricity; prioritise the reduction of emissions from transport; improve energy efficiency and provide a long-term strategy to decarbonise heat.

Friday 15/11 – Labour announces plans to install solar power hubs in 2,000 public spaces, such as libraries and community centres. The Liberal Democrats announce that, if the party came to power, it would spend £100bn tackling the effects of climate change and protecting the environment. National Grid commits to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Thursday 14/11 – Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledges to quadruple the UK’s offshore wind capacity from 8.5GW today to 40GW by 2030 if the Conservative Party wins the 2019 General Election. National Grid ESO publishes two reports concerning the Distributed ReStart project, which explores how distributed energy resources in GB can be used to restore power in the event of a total or partial blackout of the National Electricity Transmission System. The Energy Investment Bank (EIB) confirms plans to end the financing of fossil fuel energy projects from the end of 2021.

Wednesday 13/11 – The SNP announces its Green Energy Deal, unveiling a series of measures to help reduce emissions. The Green Party announces that, if it came to a position of power following the General Election, it would appoint a Carbon Chancellor to be based in 11 Downing Street. UK Power Networks (UKPN) unveils a new competition which will look for 170MW of flexibility requirements across 115 areas on its network using Piclo Flex’s platform.

Tuesday 12/11 – RWE announces that it has signed a 2.5-year power purchase agreement with E. ON to supply 3TWh of renewable electricity annually for its UK customers. The first planning applications have been submitted for the Greenlink Interconnector between Wales and Ireland, Greenlink Interconnector Limited announces.

Monday 11/11 – Western Power Distribution and National Grid Electricity System Operator announce they are procuring flexibility on the grid via Centrica’s Local Energy Market platform through a trial in Cornwall. Flexibility enables energy users such as businesses to take advantage of cheaper electricity or even sell electricity generated on-site back to the grid. The Ministers of Finance for eight EU Member States – the Netherlands, Germany, France, Sweden, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg, Denmark and Bulgaria – issue a joint statement urging the EU to introduce a tax on flights to take into account the carbon emissions they cause.

Friday 8/11 – Innovate UK announces it is set to launch a £1.5mn competition to support UK businesses in working with US partners to develop innovative offshore wind technologies. UK Green Building Council issues a short report calling for all buildings and infrastructure to become climate resilient by 2030 and to maximise environmental net gains through the prioritisation of nature-based solutions. Birmingham Airport commits to 2033 net zero target.

Thursday 7/11 – BEIS’s latest Public Attitudes Tracker – Wave 31 – reveals that support for renewable energy increased from 82% in June 2019 to 84% in September 2019, whilst opposition to renewable energy reached hit 2%. Manifesto for the North launched by NP11, setting out energy policy recommendations for the North of England. Scottish Renewables publishes its manifesto for the upcoming General Election. Ofgem confirms that mutualisation will be triggered for the 2018-19 Renewables Obligation.

Wednesday 6/11 – The General Election 2019 campaign begins, with purdah coming into effect. BEIS publishes guidance concerning the trading of gas with the EU if there is no Brexit deal. Liberal Democrat Leader Jo Swinson launches the party’s Plan for a Brighter Future, outlining the party's aim to tackle the climate emergency by generating 80% of the UK’s electricity from renewables by 2030, as well as insulate all low-income homes by 2025.

Tuesday 5/11 – Parliamentary Under-Secretary Department for BEIS Nadhim Zahawi issues a Written Ministerial Statement on energy policy regarding the government’s preparations for the UK's withdrawal from Euratom and the EU. RenewableUK warns that the UK is “significantly off track” to meet the level of onshore wind needed to achieve the legally binding 2050 net zero emissions target.
Monday 4/11 – Chair of the Environmental Audit Committee Mary Creagh publishes letter written to Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom asking for reassurance that a future government will address issues raised by the Net Zero Government inquiry. CBI urges next government to “kick-start ambitious and focused action to tackle the climate emergency”.

Friday 1/11 – The government publishes its response to the Commons Science and Technology committees report: Clean Growth: Technologies for meeting the UK’s emissions reduction targets. Labour accuses the government of failing to bring urgent plans to tackle the climate and environment emergency in time to meet the six-month deadline which was set by Parliament when it voted to declare an emergency on 1 May. A report by Carbon Tracker revealed that the world’s listed oil and gas majors must cut combined production by a third by 2040 to keep emissions within international climate targets.

Written By Graham Paul


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