Boris claims £22bn green energy push boosts security while Britons face eye-watering bills

Dan Wootton criticises plans for Net Zero on GB News

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As energy bills soar for millions of Britons up and down the country, the UK has been scrambling to wean itself off expensive fossil fuels by ramping up its dependence on alternative power sources. As global wholesale gas prices spiral out of control, the knock-on effects are being felt by consumers in the UK, with the energy price cap expected to reach £4,200 by January according to some estimates.

But to swerve these knock-on impacts, the Government’s energy strategy unveiled in April detailed a plot to hark back to Britain’s glory days of the industrial age by becoming “energy independent”.

To do so, the Prime Minister stressed that “we need a flow of energy that is affordable, clean and above all secure” that is “made in Britain, for Britain”.

And today, Mr Johnson has claimed that the UK is well on the way to doing so, having unlocked £22billion of green investment last year.

The Prime Minister wrote in a post on Twitter: “There are 10,000 days to go until the UK reaches Net Zero emissions and we’re making good progress.

“We have already supported 68,000 green jobs, boosted the UK’s energy security by generating more renewable power and attracted £22billion of green investment last year.”

Net Zero refers to completely getting rid of energy sources that emit carbon, which the UK aims to do by 2050.

This means eventually scrapping the reliance on natural gas, which the UK currently pays expensive international prices for when it is needed.

But while it is claimed that boosting renewables can help the UK ramp up its homegrown energy and in turn slash bills, critics of net zero fear that it could push bills up.

The Net Zero Scrutiny Group is made up of backbench Conservative MPs that oppose a number of the Government’s net zero plans.

The group’s chair, Craig Mackinlay, has said the Government should “pause for breath before running further and faster to a Net Zero electoral disaster based upon uncosted fairytales”.

He told The Times in August 2021: “I am not a climate-change denier.

“I’m concerned that our electors of the future will be huddling round their heat-pump radiators and paying off the debt on an electric vehicle they never wanted either as they look wistfully at China, Indonesia and other nations still enjoying cheap energy from some of the dirtiest fossil fuels.”

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But Mr Johnson stressed the urgency of Net Zero, saying: “With spikes in the cost of energy, household bills soaring, I know people up and down the country who will partly blame this great ambition for Net Zero, for the cost of living challenges that we face.

“And we have got to be realistic, hydrocarbons will be an important part of our transition.

“But I want to tell you that the cost of failing to reach Net Zero by 2050, the cost of failing to tackle climate change will be much, much greater.”

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