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Home > Environment and Rural > Environment and Rural: the National Picture > Energy: the National Picture

The contents of this website are under review following the formation of a new HM Government. Current information may be found at www.gonetwork.gos.gov.uk.

A wind turbine

Energy: the National Picture

Energy is fundamental to our way of life. The threat of climate change and reduced UK oil, gas and coal production must be addressed. These challenges provide a focus for a shift towards becoming a low carbon economy, through energy efficiency and the development of renewable and sustainable energy sources.

Low Carbon Transition Plan

On 15 July 2009 the Government published its Low Carbon Transition Plan (LCTP) which plots how the UK will meet the 34% cut in emissions on 1990 levels by 2020, set out in the budget.

Emissions have already been reduced by 21% – equivalent to cutting emissions entirely from four cities the size of London. 

By 2020 it is anticipated that more than 1.2 million people will be in green jobs.  7 million homes will have benefited from whole house makeovers, and more than 1.5 million households will be supported to produce their own clean energy.  Around 40% of electricity will be from low-carbon sources, from renewables, nuclear and clean coal.  We will be importing half the amount of gas that we otherwise would, and the average new car will emit 40% less carbon than now. 

The Transition Plan is the most systematic response to climate change of any major developed economy.

Low Carbon Industrial Strategy

Published alongside the LCTP, the Government's Low Carbon Industrial Strategy (LCIS) presents a series of active government interventions to support industries critical to tackling climate change.

The LCIS puts workers and businesses in the UK at the forefront of massive global opportunity by targeting key industries and regions where the UK has competitive or commercial advantage.

Renewable Energy Strategy

Following a major consultation exercise in 2008, the Renewable Energy Strategy (RES) was published by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) in 2009.  This strategy sets out how we all have a role to play in promoting renewable energy, from individuals to communities to businesses.

For further information on any of the above, visit DECC's website.

Government Office

Several Government Office functions have an energy implication including housing (where Local Authorities have a duty to identify efficiencies), transport, planning (especially renewable energy and energy efficiency of new developments), and fuel poverty as a dimension of social deprivation and health.


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