UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a series of investments and initiatives today, that he says are aimed at making the UK the world leader in clean wind energy. Today’s announcements were made as part of the government’s commitment to reach net zero emissions by 2050.
As part of today’s announcement, Johnson said that £160 million will be made available to upgrade ports and infrastructure across communities across Northern England, Scotland and Wales, in order to increase offshore wind capacity. The new investments are expected to result in the near-term creation of 2,000 construction jobs, and support up to 60,000 jobs directly and indirectly by 2030 in ports, factories and the supply chains.
Johnson has additionally set out a series of commitments aiming to accelerate progress to the country’s net zero emissions goal. These include boosting the country’s 2030 offshore wind energy production target to 40GW from 30GW, more than enough electricity to power every home in the country by 2030; setting a new 1GW by 2030 target for floating offshore wind energy delivery, and; setting a target to support up to double the capacity of renewable energy in the next ‘Contracts for Difference’ auction, which will open in late 2021 – providing enough clean, low cost energy to power up to 10 million homes.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“Our seas hold immense potential to power our homes and communities with low-cost green energy and we are already leading the way in harnessing its strengths.
“Now, as we build back better we must build back greener. So we are committing to new ambitious targets and investment into wind power to accelerate our progress towards net zero emissions by 2050.
“This sets us on our path towards a green industrial revolution, which will provide tens of thousands of highly-skilled jobs.”
The Prime Minister’s Office stated that today’s commitments are the first stage outlined as part of the Prime Minister’s ten-point plan for a green industrial revolution, which will be set out fully later this year. According to the PMO, the plan is expected to include ambitious targets and major investment into industries, innovation and infrastructure that will accelerate the UK’s path to net zero by 2050.
Business and Energy Secretary Alok Sharma said:
“The offshore wind sector is a major British success story, providing cheap, green electricity while supporting thousands of good-quality jobs.
“Powering every home in the country through offshore wind is hugely ambitious, but it’s exactly this kind of ambition which will mean we can build back greener and reach net zero emissions by 2050.”