Green MEPs challenge Commission over UK’s energy policies following ‘Ruddgate’

In the wake of revelations that the UK is on track to miss its renewable energy target, a group of MEPs from the Greens/European Free Alliance Group have submitted questions to the European Commission voicing concerns over the UK’s energy policies [1].

The questions follow a leaked letter yesterday, which revealed that Energy Secretary, Amber Rudd, misled Parliament by promising the UK was ‘on course’ to deliver its legally binding EU renewables obligation of 15% by 2020 when in fact she knew that the UK faces a shortfall of almost 25% of that obligation.

Today Ms Rudd was quizzed by the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee on the ‘serious allegations’ that Parliament had been misled over the UK’s position on renewable energy targets. She said that while the UK remains signed up to the 15% renewables target, it looked set to miss it. She also acknowledged that the government did not have the right policies, particularly in transport and heat, in order to meet the 2020 EU target. Rudd also admitted, as yesterday’s leaked letter revealed, that the Government could be forced to buy in renewable energy from overseas in order to hit its target.

Molly Scott Cato MEP said:

“We are raising these questions as a matter of urgency, given that Amber Rudd appears to have deceived Parliament and the public over the UKs likelihood of meeting its renewable energy obligation. We want reassurance from the Commission that the targets are mandatory and that the Commission will not permit the use of trading in ‘statistical credits’ between overachieving and underachieving nations to allow the UK to reduce its commitment to domestic renewable generation. The UK must ensure they have in place a credible plan to meet these important targets. If Amber Rudd cannot deliver on this vital part of Europe’s climate and energy policy she must consider her position.” 


[1] See full written questions to Commissioner Cañete, Commissioner for Climate Action & Energy, signed and submitted by Molly Scott Cato MEP (Green), Keith Taylor MEP (Green), Jean Lambert MEP (Green), Ian Hudghton MEP (SNP), Alyn Smith MEP (SNP), Jill Evans MEP (Plaid)