Greenpeace reaction to the Autumn Statement

Publication date: 23rd November 2016

Doug Parr, Greenpeace Chief Scientist said: “Today’s Autumn Statement did little to boost the UK’s credibility as a global leader on climate action. But there were some glimmers of hope in the money for electric vehicles and a stable carbon floor price that will help phase out coal. Now, with a smidgen of innovation and inspiration, the new national productivity investment fund should back clean, modern and home grown technologies.  Other countries are already doing this and are forging ahead in the race to dominate the booming low carbon economy. They are reaping the rewards from new jobs, increased exports and cleaner air. The government is currently holding back the very UK businesses from offshore wind or to battery storage companies which should be in pole position to win this race.”

Commenting on freezing the Carbon Floor Price, Dr Doug Parr continued: “It is good news the government has heeded the call to provide certainty and stability for investors and business. This is a policy that needs to stay in place until the historic coal phaseout is locked in and renewables plus battery storage and interconnectors are lined up to fill the gap in the long run.”

Regarding the Chancellor’s announcement on increased cash for electrc vehicles, Dr Doug Parr said: “The further support for Electric Vehicles and a tax break for charging points demonstrates that the government is thinking about a transition to clean vehicles . While it’s a step in the right direction, it’s important to recognise that  meeting climate targets agreed in Paris and protecting our health from air pollution, all new cars need to be electric by 2030. Any future investments in clean technology and transport systems need to match this ambition.”