Energy regulator Ofgem has welcomed a new plan to give it a mandate to help Britain reach its climate change targets. This move signifies a significant change as it aligns the interests of consumers nationwide with the country’s goal of achieving net zero emissions by 2050.
The modification to the Government’s energy Bill grants Ofgem the responsibility of safeguarding the interests of both existing and future gas and electricity consumers. Previously, Ofgem was tasked with protecting customers’ interests by reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the supply of energy.
However, with this new mandate, Ofgem will prioritise the protection of future consumers’ interests by actively supporting the Government in achieving its net zero target by 2050.
Jonathan Brearley, the CEO of Ofgem, emphasised the organisation’s unwavering commitment to safeguarding consumers: “Our fundamental objective will always be to protect the interests of existing and future consumers. It is at the heart of everything we do.
“Ofgem welcomes this mandate, which brings us in line with the UK Government’s legal obligations and, for the first time, directly links consumers’ interests to specific net zero targets.
“We’re clear consumers are best protected by building a low-carbon, low-cost energy system, scaling up long-term investment and stabilising prices with clean energy. The mandate sends a clear message: we must end our historic dependency on fossil fuels and stop our exposure to volatile global markets. We’re laying the foundations for the energy system of the future.
“The net zero mandate has overwhelming backing from every part of the energy industry, consumer campaigners and climate activists. It underlines net zero is the best option, not only from a climate perspective, but to ensure a secure, low-cost energy future.”
Doug Parr, the policy director of Greenpeace UK, expressed satisfaction with the government’s decision: “We’re glad that the Government has seen sense on this. Ensuring the UK’s energy regulator has a legal requirement to help meet our emissions targets is critical to getting more renewables into our energy mix.”
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