Labour have proposed a slew of amendments to the Energy Bill that would cut energy bills by £93 billion for the British people, make Britain energy secure and end once and for all the Tories’ ban on onshore wind.
In a first major test for new Energy Secretary, Claire Coutinho – the sixth Conservative in post since 2019, and the fourth to bring forward the long delayed Energy Bill – Labour will bring forward proposals that they claim would put the UK on a path to becoming a clean energy superpower by 2030, including with an end to the ban on new onshore wind in England.
Onshore wind is one of the cheapest, quickest forms of power available, but Rishi Sunak has consistently refused to overturn the ban on new onshore wind projects that was brought in by the Conservatives in 2015. Onshore wind ban has become a totem on Tory failure on energy security. Due to the ban, Ukraine built more onshore wind turbines than England in 2022.
The only way to remove the onshore wind ban permanently is with Labour’s amendment to bring the planning rules for onshore wind in line with all forms of major infrastructure. There are serious concerns across the energy industry that, although an improvement on the current situation, the Sharma amendment does not go far enough, because it does not bring the planning rules for onshore wind in line with major infrastructure.
The Tory ban destroyed the market for onshore wind projects, with project approvals falling 97%; since 2015, only 10 onshore wind projects have been consented for development in England and only three are actually operating. There are also currently hundreds of projects waiting to go that received planning permission before the ban but are being blocked by the Tories.
Labour would reverse the ban on onshore wind, so the British people can reap the benefits of cleaner, cheaper power.
Senior Conservatives are now actively opposing the Government’s defence of the ban, with 25 Conservative MPs already supporting an amendment that would partially overturn the ban from former Energy Secretary, Alok Sharma.
Labour’s plans to expand clean power are part of Keir Starmer’s commitment to make the UK a world-leading clean energy superpower by 2030, which would cut bills by £93bn for British families. Labour will also propose an amendment to the Energy Bill to make clean power by 2030 an official government target, in a move that would boost energy security and reduce the UKs dependence on fossil fuel and the dictators who control those markets. Independent analysis has confirmed that Labour’s plans would desicively reduce energy imports into the UK.
Ed Miliband MP, Labour’s Shadow Energy Security and Net Zero Secretary, said: “This is the first major test of the new Energy Secretary. Will she persist with the Tories’ disastrous ban onshore wind, which has undermined Britain’s energy security and cost families money, or will she put country before party, stand up to her cabinet colleagues, and back homegrown clean power?
“We’ve heard countless promises from Conservatives before on removing the ban. But we cannot have half measures or false solutions.
“Only Labour can cut energy bills for good and make us energy secure, with our plan to make Britain a clean energy superpower by 2030, and GB Energy – our publicly-owned national champion that will produce cheap, clean power in Britain, for Britain.”