Labour vows to re-nationalise energy supply industry, cap prices and keep UK in EU internal energy market

If the Labour Party forms the British government after next month’s election, it will make major changes to the UK energy sector, including re-nationalisation.

In its manifesto, Labour states it energy policy is built on three simple principles:

  1. To ensure security of energy supply and ‘keep the lights on’
  2. To ensure energy costs are affordable for consumers and businesses
  3. To ensure we meet our climate change targets and transition to a low carbon economy .

In addition, a new Labour government under Jeremy Corbyn would introduce an immediate emergency price cap to ensure that the average dual fuel household energy bill remains below £1,000 per year and take energy back into public ownership to deliver renewable energy, affordability for consumers, and democratic control.

The party manifesto explains Labour will do this in the following stages:

  • Regain control of energy supply networks through the alteration of the National and Regional Network Operator licence conditions
  • Support the creation of publicly owned, locally accountable, energy companies and co-operatives to rival existing private energy suppliers, with at least one in every nation or region Legislate to permit publicly owned local companies to purchase the regional grid infrastructure, and to ensure that national and regional grid infrastructure is brought into public ownership over time,
  • Emerging technologies such as carbon capture and storage (CCS) will help to smooth the transition to cleaner fuels and to protect existing jobs as part of the future energy mix

‘Labour will safeguard the offshore oil and gas industry, with a strategy focused on protecting Scotland’s vital North Sea assets, and the jobs and skills that depend on them.

‘Decommissioning can be a thriving industry for the North East of Scotland but the government needs to act quickly to secure the investment and jobs the area needs.

‘We are committed to renewable energy projects, including tidal lagoons, which can help create manufacturing and energy jobs as well as contributing to climate change commitments.

‘Ensure that 60 per cent of the UK’s energy comes from zerocarbon or renewable sources by 2030.

‘The UK has the world’s oldest nuclear industry, and nuclear will continue to be part of our energy supply. We will support further nuclear projects and protect nuclear workers’ jobs and pensions. There are considerable opportunities for nuclear power and decommissioning both internationally and domestically.

‘As part of the Brexit negotiations, Labour will prioritise maintaining access to the internal energy market’.

The party also re-states its policy of preventing onshore exploration for shale gas.

  • The SNP is due to publish its manifesto for the Westminster parliament general election today (23 May).  It is not expected to contain any policy surprises, given that the party has put much of energy ‘wish list’ into the ongoing draft Scottish Energy Strategy.

 

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