The Uncomfortable Truth About the UK’s Climate Policies | Technology

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Russia’s invasion of Ukraine feels like a really pivotal moment in this narrative. In the autumn of 2022, energy prices in the UK were skyrocketing, and yet the response of Liz Truss, prime minister at the time, was to double down on oil and gas exploration and refuse to ask people to cut down their energy usage. It was the absolute opposite approach to many European nations facing the same problem.

At the time [the invasion] happened, it was obviously a genuine crisis and I thought climate was going to come down the priority list. But in my technocratic mind, I was also thinking this was going to create the incentive to get off high-carbon fuels—if you want to know what the world looks like with a high carbon price, we’re about to find out.

What I didn’t expect is that the green arguments were too late out of the blocks because the fossil arguments stepped in immediately to say, “This is why we need a domestic fossil fuel supply.” That really important argument, to act on this because fossil fuels are so price-volatile and so expensive, was slightly missed in the political ether at the time, and we jumped to a different narrative of what the country needed to do.



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