Another barren budget for getting UK to net zero

 In Climate Change, News

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt’s latest statement last Wednesday was another barren budget for net zero, said Midlands energy expert Ron Fox,

“Although there were a number of green measures,” said Ron, of Noreus Ltd, “there were many missed environmental opportunities with the climate and nature crises once again sidelined.”

He said the four good environmental points including the announcement that the government is buying two nuclear sites from Hitachi for £160m, in a move aimed at delivering nuclear expansion plans quickly. The sites are at Wylfa in Anglesey, Wales and Oldbury-on-Severn in South Gloucestershire.

Secondly, the chancellor confirmed a £120m increase to £1.1bn in funding for the green industries growth accelerator (GIGA). This fund is designed to support carbon capture and storage, greenhouse gas removal plus hydrogen, offshore wind and electricity networks, as well as civil nuclear power.

Thirdly, the government also gave details of its sixth auction (AR6) round for new renewable energy schemes. This £1bn (AR6) fund includes £800m specifically for offshore wind. Last year’s fifth auction (AR5) failed to attract any businesses for the first time to new offshore wind projects.

Fourthly, there will be a one-off increase in the rate of air passenger duty for business and first-class travellers from April 2025. Economy flights will rise in line with forecast retail price inflation, while the rates on domestic and short-haul flights will be frozen.

But Ron said there was no news of further investment in the move to green energy and to upgrade homes and buildings to help cut carbon emissions. Plus, there was no announcement to make electric vehicles (EVs) more affordable, despite calls for action by the car industry and energy companies.
But he pointed out that money spent on renewables, home insulation and better public transport would not only boost the economy; it would also protect health, slash energy bills and help the UK play its part in the fight against the growing climate crisis.
Ron said new research published only last week revealed that the UK’s net zero economy grew by 9 per cent in 2023 while the rest of the UK economy continued to stagnate.
A report published last week using the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) figures showed that the UK is spending the least among the top five major European economies on a low-carbon energy policy.

“Our failure to match the USA and the European Union, who are leading the charge with billions of pounds of green investment, will cost this country jobs and future prosperity,” warned Ron, Ron, of Noreus Ltd, which is based at Keele University’s Science and Innovation Park.

“Net-zero should be treated as a national security issue,” said Ron, “and the UK needs a long-term green investment plan as low-cost renewables are the growth engine of the future.”

For advice on going green and cutting carbon emissions contact Ron Fox, on 01782 756995.

Caption: Climate and nature crises were once again sidelined in the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s latest budget. Image supplied by

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