Businesses accuse UK government of fuelling energy uncertainty

An alliance of 52 of Britain’s largest businesses and industry bodies have written an open letter the UK Chancellor George Osborne demanding that he “provide investors with the long-term confidence they need to transform our electricity market and make investments capable of driving wider economic growth”.

Peter Young, chairman of the Aldersgate Group, said: “The message of this letter is loud and clear: we must put an end to any political uncertainty surrounding the UK's energy future and start unleashing the billions of pounds of overdue investment which will deliver new growth for our economy.”

The letter – with signatories including insurer Aviva, British American Tobacco, EDF, Microsoft, Philips, broadcaster Sky and environmental services company Veolia – states that the UK’s economic growth, competitive advantage and job market will be “determined by our response to climate change, energy security and commodity price volatility”.

“Failure to act at sufficient scale and pace will undermine our prosperity and cause us to miss out on the huge commercial opportunities associated with the global shift to a low carbon, resource efficient economy.”

It claims that the government’s “perceived commitment to the low carbon transition is being undermined by recent statements calling for unabated gas in the power sector beyond 2030 and the absence of a specific carbon intensity target”.

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