I welcome the fact that the government is supporting nuclear power by:
• Rebuilding Britain’s nuclear industry to 24GW by 2050 – securing Britain’s energy supply. This will involve a massive expansion in nuclear projects, with a new ambition of up to 24GW by 2050 to come from this safe, clean, and reliable power, representing around 25 per cent of our projected electricity demand.
• Progressing 8 new nuclear reactors, including Small Modular Reactors – creating a reliable and efficient source of power. The aim is that Britain's nuclear sector could start progressing 8 new reactors this decade - the equivalent of one reactor a year which would include Small Modular Reactors.
• Establishing Great British Nuclear, a new vehicle to lead our work. We will create a new delivery vehicle this year to bring forward new projects, secure access to the sites needed and facilitate projects. The UK has a variety of designated sites including Wylfa, Sizewell, Moorside and Oldbury.
• Launching a selection process next year for further UK projects. The government intends to enter negotiations with the most credible projects to enable a potential government award of support in the first half of the next Parliament.
But this is far from all that is included in the Energy Security Strategy. It also includes the following measures on Energy efficiency:
Slashing VAT on energy efficiency projects, allowing families to cut energy bills. We will drive down demand by making homes warmer. At Spring Statement, the Chancellor announced a temporary VAT cut on the installation of energy efficiency projects such as solar panels, insulation and heat pumps – saving £1,000 - £2,000 on the cost of a heat pump. This will be in place for the next five years to 2027.
• Investing over £6.6 billion to improve energy efficiency, cutting bills by £300. We will deliver upgrades to over half a million homes in the coming years through our Social Housing Decarbonisation, Energy Company Obligation and Home Upgrade Grant Schemes, delivering average bill savings of £300.
• Launching a Boiler Upgrade Scheme to move families off expensive gas and onto cheaper electricity. This month, the government will launch a £450 million scheme to ensure all those who want a heat pump this year can have one installed. The uptake of this scheme will be kept under review.
• Running a heat pump manufacturing competition to bring forward jobs and investment. The government will run a Heat Pump Investment Accelerator Competition in 2022 worth up to £30 million, boosting jobs, investment,and the supply chain.
• Reviewing policy on planning and conservation and listed buildings to address barriers to energy performance improvements.
The government also aims to increase Britain's offshore wind capacity to 50GW by 2030, and will facilitate the rollout of onshore wind where there is local support.