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Environment & Energy Publications
Nearly 25% of all school children in London and 44% of the Capital’s workforce are exposed to levels of air pollution that exceed legal and healthy limits. Up in the Air analyses data from over 100 air quality monitoring sites across London. It shows the most polluted parts of the capital currently have levels of Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) nearly four times the legal limit, with 12.5% of London’s total area exceeding the legal limit for NO2, and that deprived areas are more likely to be affected.
DECC could save hundreds of millions of pounds and promote more competition and innovation among energy companies by sweeping away swathes of energy quangos at the Spending Review. Currently more than 30 bodies, many with overlapping functions and with an annual cost of £600m a year, govern energy policy, regulations and rules.
Onshore wind is the most cost effective and scaleable low carbon technology in the UK and should be allowed to continue, albeit with subsidies phased out, if the government wants to decarbonise at least cost to the consumer.
For too long policymakers have failed to strike the right balance between energy affordability and decarbonising the economy. Ill thought through energy and climate policies have added £120 to the average household energy bill over the past five years. While reducing carbon emissions remains critical, if the government wants to retain support for this goal it must focus on carrying it out in a way that reduces the price of energy bills.
Warmer Homes presents a character profile of the 2.3 million households in England living in fuel poverty. Among the findings in the report is the fact that nearly half of all fuel poor households (1.1m) are in work, challenging the perception that fuel poverty primarily involves the elderly and retired.
This report calls for plans to introduce auctioning to enable all technologies to compete on a level playing field should be brought forward. It points to Brazil, where prices for onshore wind have dropped to world record lows since auctioning was introduced. If the UK can achieve a even a fraction of the results from Brazil, it would allow much greater decarbonisation for the available budget.
Connecting the UK to power stations in other countries could help bring down energy bills and meet our decarbonisation targets. Getting Interconnected shows that interconnectors could save British consumers as much as £1bn a year, as well as allowing access to zero-carbon electricity. The report calls for overseas generators to be allowed to compete for government subsidy in the new capacity market and endorses ways to ensure that revenue supports development of new interconnector links.
On 21st November 2013, Policy Exchange held a roundtable discussion on ways to improve the emissions performance of London’s road transport, and how local and national government policy can develop to reduce pollution and improve public health. This publication is a summary of the remarks made at that event.
Britain’s urban green spaces are coming under pressure, with financial and development constraints, coupled with a surprising lack of data, raising the possibility of a decline in the quantity and quality of our urban green spaces. Park Landcalls for a new freely-available national urban green space map for the UK to help make sure people living in cities have adequate access to good green spaces, test whether public money is being well spent and allow clever innovations in improving green spaces to be easily shared.
On 25th June 2013, Policy Exchange held a roundtable discussion to consider whether the increased volume of UK waste exports creates risks for the waste industry and whether policy makers should intervene in the current market. This publication is a summary of the remarks made at that event.