Don’t invest in fracking and back renewables.
That’s the message from Chris Skidmore MP, who’s responsible for conducting the government’s four-month net zero review.
Liz Truss entrusted the MP with the job of ensuring that net zero practices were being carried out correctly and efficiently by businesses – and to report back to Downing Street with recommendations to best achieve the UK’s 2050 target.
He stated his desire to show the rest of the world that the UK is the best place to invest if people are looking to grow their low carbon portfolios.
As part of his review, he has warned investors that investing in the fracking industry “will leave you with stranded assets,” and is instead urging a push for renewables.
Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg has been a big supporter for fracking, however, fracking company Cuadrilla has knocked back aims to push fracking forward, claiming the UK doesn’t have the geological make-up to generate the necessary level of productivity.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine impacting the gas market so heavily is a key reason for the UK to up its renewable stance, he stresses, warning that if it doesn’t start investing now it will fall behind France, the US and Germany in the market.
One of Skidmore’s other points centralised on reducing the country’s reliance on China for lithium, which is a critical component of electric vehicle batteries.
He said: “We need to be thinking about how we can process lithium in this country if we’re going to ensure that we don’t have a similar crisis on the renewable side as we’ve just had on the gas side.”
On his overall aim with the net zero review, he added: “The challenge is, how do I ensure absolutely that my next car is an electric vehicle, the boiler is replaced with a heat pump and my insulation is watertight.
“I want to switch this from something that’s good for the environment to something that’s also good for the economy and a huge opportunity for economic growth.”