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The imbalance of power: the challenge of decarbonisation

The challenge of drastically cutting carbon dioxide emissions from energy has major implications for domestic energy consumers’ wallets, how they heat their homes and the protections they enjoy

The UK’s electricity generating capacity needs renewing, and this needs to take a low-carbon approach to meet the government’s binding and ambitious carbon reduction and renewable energy targets. High upfront costs and long payback periods for investors make low-carbon electricity a risky business proposition, so policies are needed to encourage this investment.

With so many households already struggling with their energy bills, the government must ensure consumers’ interests are firmly at the heart of its plans to cut emissions from energy. This 2013 report by Which? calls on the government to ensure that its policies meet the following five principles:

- Policies should deliver low-carbon energy at an acceptable cost to the consumer

- Policy costs and subsidy levels should be clear and transparent

- There should be a fair pass through of subsidy costs to consumers, with targeted help for the most vulnerable households and no risk of suppliers profiting from their role

- As households move to low-carbon heat, all should remain protected and have heating that is suitable for their home

- Consumer buy-in for policies is important and government should promote this with clear and consistent messaging.

This 2013 report sets out a comprehensive package of recommendations to help ensure policies meet these principles.

See our full report:

The Imbalance of Power: the challenge of decarbonisation 9034 Kb