Following the launch of the political parties’ manifestos, we’ve summarised the main policies and pledges related to the environment, energy and climate change. With the latest round of UN emissions talks at the end of the year, 2015 remains crucial for developing the global fight against climate change, as well as domestic matters covering rising consumer bills and energy security.
Here, we give an overview of the Conservative and Labour parties’ energy policies.
The Conservative Party pledges to:
- Phase out subsidies for new onshore wind farms and give local authorities in England the final say on where wind farms are built
- Spend over £3bn improving the environment by 2020
- Ensure almost every car and van across the UK is a zero emission vehicle by 2050
- Promote competition in the energy market, boosting the number of independent suppliers to offer consumers greater choice
- Provide Smart meters to all homes and business by 2020
- Support the safe development of shale gas
- Create a Sovereign Wealth Fund for the North of England to benefit from shale gas resources
- Cut emissions as cost effectively as possible
- Push for a stronger global climate deal at the December UN meeting
The Labour Party pledges to:
- Freeze gas and electricity prices until the start of 2017 (Labour have predicted this will save a typical household £120 and an average business £1,800 a year)
- Reduce carbon emissions from electricity to zero by 2030
- Restructure the energy market to end the dominance of the major companies
- Abolish Ofgem and replace it from January 2017 with a tough new energy watchdog
- Give the new regulator the power to force suppliers to pass on cuts in the wholesale price to consumers
- Introduce a simple new tariff structure to make it easier to compare prices
- Create one million additional green jobs by 2025
- Establish robust regulations before introducing fracking
- Insulate 5m homes by 2020
- Push for an ambitious agreement on climate change at the December UN meeting
Read our summary of all the main political parties’ energy policies here.