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How is the government approaching their clean growth strategy?

June 12, 2018

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How is the government approaching their clean growth strategy?

Britain has an aim that to reduce the greenhouse gases that are emitted on a national scale — using the Clean Growth Strategy as their driving force, we should witness a lower-carbon future for our country.

If you’re interested in learning more about this, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, otherwise known as BEIS, can be read in full here. Don’t have time to trawl through all 165 pages? Fear not, because gas mains specialist Flogas Britain has done the hard work for you. Just read on for a summary of the strategy’s key points, and what they mean for UK homes and businesses.  


How are the UK committing to climate change?
To understand how the UK are committing to climate change, it’s worth knowing what legislation pioneered the Clean Growth Strategy.

Britain has a carbon reduction target that was brought about by the Climate Change Act of 2008. The crux of it? To reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80% by 2050 (compared to 1990 levels).


Reaching the target
According to BEIS and figures published in March 2017 — the UK is close to hitting the target, with emissions dropping by 42% since 1990. While this progress is encouraging, the government acknowledges that there is still plenty more work to be done – and that’s where proposals like the Clean Growth Strategy come in.


The importance of the Clean Growth Strategy
To ensure clean growth across the country, there are two factors that play into making it a success — decreasing emissions and increasing economic growth. With that in mind, the two guiding objectives underpinning the strategy are:

 - To meet our domestic commitments at the lowest possible net cost to UK taxpayers, consumers and businesses.
 - To maximise the social and economic benefits for the UK from this transition.

To bring this vision to life, there are plenty initiatives to help drive this cause forward, such as lower-carbon processes, systems and technologies across the mainland which will benefit both businesses and homes.


What is the UK proposing?
There are six main sections to the Clean Growth Proposal, which are collectively responsible for 100% of carbon emissions here in the UK:

 - Improving business and industry efficiency (25% of UK emissions)
 - Improving our homes (13% of UK emissions)
 - Accelerating the shift to low-carbon transport (24% of UK emissions)
 - Delivering clean, smart, flexible power (21% of UK emissions)
 - Enhancing the benefits and value of our natural resources (15% of UK emissions)
 - Leading the public sector (2% of UK emissions)

However, there are 50 pledges in total, which can be read in this executive summary.


The impact on homes and businesses

The government is looking to encourage businesses and homes to minimise their carbon footprint and this can be achieved in a majority of ways. A major focus will be reassessing the fuels we use for jobs like heating, cooking, and powering industrial and manufacturing processes – and embracing cleaner, greener alternatives.

From using renewable technologies, such as solar panels and biomass boilers, to cleaner fuels — Britain wants to reduce pollution across the country. For example, for off-grid homes and businesses, the strategy sets out specific plans to phase out high-carbon forms of fossil fuels like oil. As the lowest-carbon conventional off-grid fuel, oil to liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) conversions will play a key part in replacing oil in rural parts of the country.

As natural gas is the lowest-carbon fossil fuel available today, it will continue to be used in buildings that are linked with a mains network. Flogas, which specialises in highly competitive commercial mains gas, expects to see this part of its business continue to go from strength to strength. The company, which has been an expert in the energy sector for more than 30 years’, also predicts that the ‘green gas’ phenomenon (natural gas injected with a proportion of environmentally friendly biogas) will grow in popularity as the Clean Growth Strategy rolls out.


Has the Clean Growth Strategy been welcomed with open arms?
Across the industry, many influential figures have been supporting the intentions of the Clean Growth Strategy.

“Through the publication of its Clean Growth Strategy, the government has made clear its intention to reduce carbon emissions from off-grid UK homes and businesses. Natural gas is affordable, versatile, widely available and – most importantly – emits significantly less carbon than the likes of coal and oil. As such, it will continue to play a central role as the UK works towards cleaning up its energy landscape. We look forward to working alongside policymakers and wider industry stakeholders to make the Clean Growth Strategy the success that it deserves to be,” commented Lee Gannon, Managing Director of Flogas.

Also supporting the strategy is Oil & Gas UK. Mike Tholen, its Upstream Policy Director, commented: “Oil & Gas UK welcomes the government’s commitment to technology in the strategy, especially with regards to carbon abatement measures such as carbon capture, usage and storage. Oil & Gas UK looks forward to working with the government to see how these technologies can further reduce emissions across the economy.”

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