Government launches new Department for Energy Security and Net Zero

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has shaken up his cabinet and introduced a new Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.

The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero has been tasked with securing long-term energy supply, bringing down bills and halving inflation.

Grant Shapps MP (pictured above) has been appointed to a new role as Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero.

The heating, plumbing and renewables industry will be paying close attention to the changes, as rising energy prices, a cost of living crisis, and ongoing decarbonisation efforts continue to make headlines.

The government claims that the move “recognises the significant impact rising prices have had on households across the country, and the need to secure more energy from domestic nuclear and renewable sources.”

It remains to be seen how these changes will impact policy and initiatives like the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, which was being delivered by BEIS, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which looks like it will be dissolved.

BEIS was introduced by Theresa May’s government in 2016, replacing the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

The ECA has broadly welcomed the creation of the new department, Paul Reeve, ECA Director of CSR said:

“We trust the new Department for Energy Security and net Zero will rapidly engage not only with the Government’s own Net Zero Carbon commitments, but also the recent recommendations of the Skidmore review, which confirmed the huge economic and other benefits of actively pursuing Net Zero.

“The new Department must focus on boosting UK low carbon energy from renewables and nuclear, and the skills base that will ensure safe and reliable delivery.

“In the context of achieving energy resilience and Net Zero, it should also review the strategic potential for tidal energy to provide a major, storable renewable energy resource for the UK.”

Jeff House, External Affairs & Policy Director at Baxi, said:
“We welcome the Prime Minister’s decision to create about the new Government Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ). By returning to a smaller and more focussed department we hope to see Government continue to work with industry on heat decarbonisation in a pragmatic and consumer centric fashion. Security of supply, customer affordability and decarbonisation all need to be considered in conjunction to ensure fairness in the energy transition.”
BESA’s technical director Graeme Fox added:

“Putting net zero and energy security together makes sense,” said BESA’s technical director Graeme Fox. “They go hand-in-hand and one of the quickest ways to achieve both is to step up efforts to improve the energy performance of the built environment through a national programme of building retrofits.

“Investing in energy efficiency measures, scaling up the roll-out of heat pumps by bringing forward the promised funding, and driving investment in training to plug our green skills gap can all be done at speed.”