The UK government will seek to attract record levels of investment in renewable energy sources and reform grid connections, King Charles said in his first king’s speech at the opening of parliament on Tuesday.
The commitment was welcomed by industry group RenewableUK, which at the same time urged the Chancellor to set out specific policies in the Autumn Statement to achieve this.
“The UK’s energy security and net zero goals can only be met if we have offshore wind as the backbone of our energy system,” said RenewableUK’s chief executive Dan McGrail. To make up for the ground lost in this year’s contracts for difference (CfD) auction, McGrail called for setting an overall budget, and maximum strike prices, at levels allowing for a return on investment for vital new projects.
RenewableUK also called for other measures, including changing the capital allowances rules so that offshore wind projects qualify for the main rate of 18% and removing the Electricity Generator Levy from offshore wind projects which opt to sell their power directly on the open market before taking up their CfD.
While welcoming the commitment to attract record levels of investment in renewables, the REA (Association for Renewable Energy and Clean Technology) said that the speech confirming plans for annual oil and gas licensing rounds is “not compatible” with energy security and net zero.
“The REA calls for concrete steps to be taken to ensure and safeguard a stable long-term investment climate for renewables and clean technologies in the Autumn Statement, especially in light of annual oil and gas licensing now being proposed,” its statement reads.