‘More energy investment needed than subsidies’



More energy investment is needed rather than subsidies in the UK.

That’s the view of Lord Gus O’Donnell, Chairman of Frontier Economics who believes that subsidies for fossil fuels “should go”.

He also said they should be related to decarbonisation.

Speaking to ELN at the Energy Live 2015 conference Lord O’Donnell added: “My view about how you get to decarbonisation is to actually try and get to where you don’t need subsidies, where you spend money on R&D such as you crack the problems to storage and transmission so you can bring down the price of renewables.  I think probably we need rather more on the investment side and less on the subsidy side particularly, I mean in some places, subsidies to fossil fuels – those should be the first to go.”

He believes it is still early to judge the government’s changes in the energy sector but he hopes that it develops “a long term plan which builds in a route to clean, affordable and secure energy for the UK”.

Lord O’Donnell launched the Global Apollo Programme with other experts in the energy sector in the summer which aims to make renewables cheaper to tackle climate change.

The project, which is supported, by David Attenborough, will be presented at COP21.

He added: “We’re quietly hopeful that a number of countries will sign up and hopefully in the run up to Paris we’ll hear more about whether this idea of putting more money in public sector research and development to co-operate with private sector because we need the private sector as well”