UK chemical industry slams government energy policy

13 July 2011 17:29  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--The UK's government's latest proposals for the supply of electricity fails to assess the impact of policies on the chemicals industry, the head of the Chemical Industries Association (CIA) said on Wednesday.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change published its Electricity Market Reform White Paper 2011 on Tuesday, detailing the government's key measures to attract investment, reduce the impact on consumer bills and create a secure mix of electricity sources, including gas, new nuclear, renewables and carbon capture and storage

“I know this is not easy, and the government is absolutely right to try and address the “25 years of policy dithering”, to help deliver both secure and sustainable energy supply and our climate change commitment,” said Steve Elliott, chief executive of the CIA.

“However, the government is absolutely wrong in yet again refusing to commit publicly to a comprehensive assessment of the cumulative impact of their policies on the very industries, such as chemicals, that will help ensure a prosperous low-carbon future for us all,” he added.

Elliott said the transition to a low carbon economy will not be cheap, and will see significant increases in electricity costs. 

“In confirming that energy bills for businesses are likely to be lower and less volatile over the period to 2030, the secretary of state [for energy and climate, Chris Huhne] is glossing over the fact that energy-intensive businesses are facing a doubling of their energy-related costs by 2020 – at the very time when it is manufacturing that is leading the country through a very fragile recovery,” he added.

Read Paul Hodges’ Chemicals and the Economy Blog

By: Franco Capaldo
+44 (0)20 8652 3214

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