U.K. Businesses Demand Government’s Missing Climate Policies
(Bloomberg) -- The U.K.’s Confederation of British Industry urged the government to publish before November several key climate policies that are holding back green investments worth billions of pounds.
Strategies on heating, hydrogen and decarbonizing transport must be published before the U.K. hosts the COP26 climate talks in five months, the lobby group for 190,000 U.K. companies said on Monday.
“The delay in some of these strategies is having an impact on investment,” said Rain Newton-Smith, chief economist at the CBI. “Our overall level of business investment in our economy is one of the weakest in the G7 and that’s something we absolutely do need to address,” she said.
Some of the policies that have been delayed will put meat on the bones of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s 12 billion-pound ($17 billion) plan from November to boost green industries and tackle climate change. Britain will need to ensure its net-zero plans have enough integrity as it seeks to as it seeks to influence other nations at the climate talks in Glasgow.
The nation’s heat and buildings strategy has been expected for months. It could include new rules to encourage people to switch away from natural gas boilers to heat their homes with more expensive heat pumps. The government wants to install 600,000 heat pumps a year by 2028 but has no framework for achieving that, the CBI said.
The group is also calling for the decarbonization of transportation to include an electric vehicle delivery plan and a target for seven large-scale battery factories in Britain. The government has committed to at least one gigafactory and is deciding on how to allocate 500 million pounds of funding for the sector.
The hydrogen strategy is expected to unlock as much as 11.4 billion pounds ($16.1 billion) of spending on new production by 2035, according to Deloitte LLP. Investors are hoping to see plans for a subsidy from the government to kickstart construction.
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