Report: Clean energy technologies could deliver half of UK emissions cuts needed by 2030

Clean energy technologies such as battery storage and solar generation could deliver more than half of the required emissions cuts set out in the UK's Clean Growth Strategy by 2030, a new report from Centrica Business Solutions has concluded.

Published on Monday (15 October), the energy and services firm Powering Sustainability report reveals that distributed energy technologies and energy efficiency technologies could collectively deliver an 11% carbon reduction across the nation’s healthcare, heavy industry and hospitality sectors.

Specifically, the report claims that if these technologies were distributed across businesses representing half of each sector, the healthcare sector could cut emissions by 14%, with the figure standing at 11% for heavy industry and 14% for hospitality.

Centrica claims that these three sectors collectively account for more than a quarter (27%) of the UK’s overall carbon footprint, making them “key” to the Clean Growth Strategy’s 2030 aim for a 20% reduction in national emissions.

The UK has made a big contribution to the fight against global warming, and much of this has been due to the shift away from coal-fired generation and the deployment of solar and wind energy,” Centrica Business Solutions’ managing director Jorge Pikunic said.  

“But things get more difficult from here, as we strive to hit our goal of an 80% reduction in UK carbon emissions by 2050. The good news is that business and the public sector can play a central role over the next decade in our path to decarbonisation.

“This report shows how by adopting distributed energy technologies, we can significantly reduce emissions and make a positive impact to the economy at the same time.”

The report builds on economic research conducted by Centrica Business Solutions in 2017, which concluded that the UK’s healthcare, heavy industry and hospitality sectors could achieve almost £1bn of savings on annual energy spend while delivering an £18.5bn boost to the nation’s economic growth by adopting clean energy technologies.

Now, the company is urging others to follow suit and carry out similar assessments for all private-sector industries, as well as for the UK’s public sector, in a bid to build the economic and environmental case for decarbonisation.

Pulling the plug on high-carbon technologies

The launch of the Powering Sustainability report comes shortly after Centrica Business Solutions unveiled similar research into the UK’s manufacturing sector, which found that businesses within the industry could collectively save £540m on their energy bills by adopting clean energy technologies.

The UK’s productivity could reportedly be boosted by £12.9bn if just half of manufacturing firms took up energy technology improvements, the research concluded.

Sarah George

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