Swindon & Wiltshire Business News

Wiltshire business leader addresses UN Climate Change Conference

Juliet Davenport

 

A Wiltshire entrepreneur has told delegates at a global climate change conference that attitudinal barriers to meeting Britain's power needs with renewable energy have disappeared.

Juliet Davenport, founder and CEO of Chippenham-based Good Energy, which has been providing customers with electricity sourced from renewable energy since 2003, was speaking at the United Nations COP25 climate summit in Madrid.

"One of the particular roles for an organisation like Good Energy is to be in the room when we are talking about possibilities. One of the things we were accused of a lot over time is we're 100 percent renewable electricity and we made that commitment to work out how difficult it would be; to work out what the challenges with the resources would be; to really paint a picture of how the UK could be," she told delegates as part of a panel presentation.

"We got attacked all the time by people saying it's not possible, you can't do it, the technologies not there. And one of the really interesting things was we used the government's modelling to prove that you could do 100 percent in the UK, and now that mental barrier is gone."

Ahead of the general election the company wrote to all energy, climate, environment, and science ministers across the main political parties with a list of policy priorities that will help the next government meet its legal obligation to reach economy wide net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

They include:

Encouraging Research and Innovation

  • Conduct a thorough review of our research institutions and ensure that they are all fit for purpose and aligned towards making the progress we need to achieve net-zero.
  • Make energy systems data available to innovators to allow for real disruption and challenge, and ultimately drive down costs for the consumer.
  • Harness the existing resources of larger industry players to engender more support for disruptors and innovators in the energy space

Better Regulation

  • Provide Ofgem with a mandate to facilitate decarbonisation, enacting the recommendations of the National Infrastructure Commission.
  • Reverse the hostile policy environment which is preventing increased deployment of renewables, storage and flexibility technologies.

Protecting and Empowering Consumers

  • Empower individuals to be part of the solution. Raise standards for housing, and build energy efficient homes, equipped with solar PV and electric vehicle charge points
  • Protect consumers by reforming Fuel Mix Disclosure rules and require that renewable energy certificates (REGOs) should be traded only with the power they relate to.
  • Unlock the potential of smart meters and allow suppliers to provide consumers with better ways to engage with their energy, lower their bills, and expedite the transition to a flexible energy system.