green electricity


A former government economist has stated that the UK has the potential to unlock £70 billion annually by becoming a major exporter of clean electricity to mainland Europe.

According to a new report, if Britain increases its clean electricity generation by 50% above the current projections for 2050, it could become a clean energy superpower and export £17 billion worth of green electricity to Europe each year.

The report also highlights that surpassing the UK’s climate targets in terms of clean electricity generation could create an additional 279,000 jobs in the country’s clean energy industries and support a total of 654,000 British jobs. Former government economist Chris Walker, who conducted the analysis for the UK Business Council for Sustainable Development, believes that the UK has the potential to transform from a net energy importer to a green electricity exporter, positioning itself as a leader in the global race towards achieving “net zero” emissions.

Going beyond net zero could attract significant private investment, amounting to trillions of pounds, and result in double the projected annual economic benefit of £35 billion for the UK compared to its current path.

However, the report warns that the UK could miss this “once in a lifetime opportunity” unless policymakers address the barriers hindering the country’s green energy ambitions.

“The UK’s strong competitive advantages in clean energy generation mean it is uniquely well positioned in the race to net zero which can deliver significant and sustained economic growth, raised productivity and increased exports,” it said.

“Other advanced economies will undertake similar journeys to the UK at the same time. For the UK to cement its leadership in tackling this challenge, crucial public policy decisions need to be taken, backed up by investment from private sector organisations to ensure that the UK makes and captures the necessary investment to capitalise on its strengths,” it added.

The National Grid is struggling to handle the increasing number of new clean energy projects seeking to connect to the grid, with applications surging from 50 per year to 50 per month over the past decade. As a result, many projects are facing a wait of 10 to 15 years to contribute clean electricity to the UK’s energy system.

The government is urged to intervene by ensuring an adequate supply of batteries for storing renewable electricity and by creating a market for producing green hydrogen. Additionally, the report emphasises the need to retrofit the UK’s energy-inefficient housing stock and commercial buildings to improve overall energy efficiency.

By addressing these challenges and capitalising on its green energy potential, the UK could not only become a clean energy leader but also reap significant economic benefits and job creation opportunities in the process.

Jason Longhurst, chair of the UK Business Council for Sustainable Development, said: “We have the potential to generate huge amounts of clean energy which would turn the UK from a net importer of energy to a nation exporting vast amounts of clean power, worth £17bn a year, to mainland Europe.”

“We believe this paper delivers an evidence base to enable our government to drive new incentives to transition, leverage in further private sector investment and position the UK as one of the world’s most investable markets for companies tackling the challenges created by climate change,” Longhurst added.



At Natural World Fund, we are passionate about stopping the decline in our wildlife.

The declines in our wildlife is shocking and frightening. Without much more support, many of the animals we know and love will continue in their declines towards extinction.

When you help to restore a patch of degraded land through rewilding to forests, meadows, or wetlands, you have a massive impact on the biodiversity at a local level. You give animals a home and food that they otherwise would not have had, and it has a positive snowball effect for the food chain.

We are convinced that this is much better for the UK than growing lots of fast-growing coniferous trees, solely to remove carbon, that don’t actually help our animals to thrive.

This is why we stand for restoring nature in the UK through responsible rewilding. For us, it is the right thing to do. Let’s do what’s right for nature!

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