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The UK's General Election: Where Do the Main Political Parties Stand on Energy and Climate Change?

As the UK gears up for the general election on Thursday, July 4th, climate change, energy, and the net-zero transition are key issues expected to influence voters. According to a recent YouGov poll, the environment and climate change rank as the fifth most important issue for voters. Here, we summarise the main political parties' stances on major energy issues, including net-zero targets, renewable generation, nuclear power, North Sea oil and gas, energy bills, and household insulation.


Labour Party

The Labour Party aims to make Britain a clean energy superpower by achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. They plan to:


  • Invest £8.3 billion in a new publicly-owned company, Great British Energy, funded by a windfall tax on oil and gas giants.

  • Double onshore wind, triple solar power, and quadruple offshore wind by 2030.

  • Support new nuclear power and invest £6.6 billion to insulate 5 million homes.

  • Implement a phased transition in the North Sea, with no new oil and gas licenses, while managing existing fields responsibly.

  • Ban fracking, halt new coal licenses, and stop the proposed new coal mine in Cumbria.


Conservative Party

The Conservative Party is committed to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, with plans to:


  • Cut the cost of tackling climate change for households and businesses by reducing green levies on bills.

  • Treble offshore wind capacity and support onshore wind and solar in suitable locations.

  • Scale up nuclear power with two new fleets of small modular reactors.

  • Legislate for annual North Sea oil and gas licensing rounds.

  • Maintain the windfall tax on oil and gas until 2028-29, raising over £26 billion.

  • Introduce a new energy efficiency voucher scheme for households to fund insulation, energy improvements, and solar panels.


Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats aim for net-zero emissions by 2045 and propose:


  • Heavy investment in renewables to generate 90% of the UK's electricity from renewables by 2030.

  • Launching an emergency Home Energy Upgrade program with free insulation and heat pumps for low-income households.

  • Implementing a proper windfall tax on oil and gas super-profits and introducing a social tariff for vulnerable households.

  • Ending fossil fuel subsidies and ensuring a just transition for workers in the oil and gas industry.

  • Maintaining bans on fracking and new coal mines, and reinstating the 2030 ban on new petrol and diesel cars.


Green Party

The Green Party aims to transition to a zero-carbon society well before 2050 with plans to:


  • Install 80GW of offshore wind, 53GW of onshore wind, and 100GW of solar by 2035.

  • Phase out nuclear energy, citing safety and cost concerns.

  • Invest £9 billion over the next five years in low-carbon heating systems.

  • Cancel recent fossil fuel licenses and stop new fossil fuel extraction projects.

  • Remove oil and gas subsidies and introduce a carbon tax to drive the green transition.



Reform UK

In stark contrast, Reform UK proposes to:


  • Scrap net-zero targets and related subsidies, claiming it will save £30 billion per year.

  • Unlock Britain's oil and gas resources to lower energy bills and stimulate economic growth.

  • Fast-track North Sea oil and gas licenses and develop new Small Modular Reactors.

  • Grant shale gas licenses on test sites, with plans for major production if safety is proven, supported by local compensation schemes.


Conclusion

The upcoming general election marks a critical turning point for the UK's energy and climate policies. As an energy consultancy, we recognise the importance of understanding each party's approach to achieving net-zero emissions, expanding renewable energy, and managing fossil fuel resources. These policies will have profound implications for businesses across all sectors, impacting energy costs, regulatory compliance, and sustainability goals.


Our expert team is here to help you navigate these changes and optimise your energy strategy in light of the election outcomes. Whether it's maximising the benefits of renewable energy investments, improving energy efficiency, or understanding regulatory impacts, we provide tailored solutions to meet your business needs.


Stay informed and prepared — contact us to discuss how these evolving policies might affect your business and how we can support your journey toward a sustainable and cost-effective energy future.

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