Electric Vehicles strategy: going in the right direction but cruising in third gear

The government’s delayed electric and ultra-low-emissions vehicles (EVs) strategy, Road to Zero, was published this week and has turned out to be more Volkswagen E-Up than Tesla Model-X: perfectly decent, will do the job, but not particularly exciting. No sense of urgency The strategy lacks ambition, sticking to a 2040 target to remove petrol andRead more

A lot of hot air: Politics and heatwaves

Last-minute trips to the coast, burnt skin, tie-less offices and packed parks. All over the UK, people have been soaking up the sun, but the soaring temperatures are wreaking disruption left, right and centre. Are we prepared? Given we’re a country obsessed with complaining about the weather, Britons do their best to make the mostRead more

It’s not easy being smart: outlook for the smart meter roll-out

It is now ten years since the (then Labour) government confirmed it would roll-out smart meters to all UK homes. And with ten years behind us, and two until the 2020 deadline for roll-out, things aren’t fully going to plan. Yes, customers with a smart meter installed are happy, but organisational and technical problems abound.Read more

UK renewables outlook: sunny with some clouds on the horizon

For most, the sunny bank holiday prompted no more than the usual signs of a mini Spring heatwave: barbecued sausages, beer-garden-pints and embarrassing sunburn. But for energy wonks, it caused celebration as yet another low-carbon record was broken. On Sunday, solar PV hit its highest ever share of the UK’s power mix, generating up toRead more

Is fracking back?

The UK has moved one step closer to a ‘fracking future’. Last week homegrown firm Cuadrilla successfully drilled the first national horizontal shale well since 2011 at a site in Lancashire. The company has also announced it is now beginning work on a second horizontal exploration well, with the aim for both sites to beRead more

Take it back now: How Labour would nationalise energy

Recent years have provided respite for those who thought Down’s median voter theory – that democratically elected parties converge towards the centre – was fine and good but basically quite boring. On the left, the Labour Party has shifted its position on fundamental issues like the role of the state in the economy. As weRead more