Government should have moved earlier to low-carbon, say industry experts by The Guardian

Energy crisis could have been lessened if more had been done to shift UK market towards renewables

A solar power array.
Solar power has plummeted in cost in recent years, despite a lack of support from the government, and is forecast to be the cheapest form of power within a few years. Photograph: Steve Parsons/PA
Renewable energy and low-carbon heating could do much more to alleviate the gas supply problems of the future – and could have done much to reduce the impact of this winter’s soaring gas prices, if the government had done more to shift the UK’s energy market sooner, industry experts have said.


The gas supply crunch has prompted a flurry of government meetings with industry, and reassurances in parliament on Monday from the business secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, that “there is no question of the lights going out” and that the UK is “highly resilient”.

But the supply issue demonstrates that fossil fuels are inherently subject to wild price fluctuations, which happen at least once a decade, according to Roger Fouquet, of the London School of Economics. “Price volatility is an inevitable part of the fossil fuel energy system,” he said. “Renewables do not suffer from these market-related problems.”

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