The 2022 Queen’s Speech, delivered by Prince Charles for the first time, revealed a new Energy Bill aimed at boosting energy security and renewable energy.
In the speech, Prince Charles said: “My Ministers will bring forward an Energy Bill to deliver the transition to cheaper, cleaner, and more secure energy. This will build on the success of the COP26 Summit in Glasgow last year.”
Charles added that the government’s legislation will aim to “promote competition, strengthen consumer rights and protect households”.
What has been outlined in the Energy Bill?
The Bill outlines a “more secure, homegrown energy system that is cleaner and more affordable” as the UK moves away from its reliance on Russian energy and aims to combat rising prices amid the Ukraine war.
In supporting documents, the government said: “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has created new challenges for the global economy – highlighting Europe’s dependence on Russian oil and gas. The Government has set out a long-term British Energy Security Strategy to boost homegrown power generation, and create cheaper, cleaner energy in the UK, for the UK. This will ensure we are not dependent on a foreign country to keep our homes warm and lit. This is not only a matter of tackling climate change, it is a matter of national security.”
The Bill consists of ten main elements, including increased investment for heat pumps, development of Britain’s onshore electricity networks, and new pro-innovation regulations for nuclear energy.
Extending the energy price cap
Perhaps most importantly, the Bill will extend the energy price cap – the maximum price suppliers can charge – beyond 2023 to tackle soaring bills.
The energy price cap was first introduced in 2019 to protect households from expensive tariffs.
The cap previously rose by 54% in April on the back of record energy prices and is expected to rise again in October.
How will the Energy Bill support small businesses?
The Government has announced further support for energy-intensive businesses with their energy costs by extending the Energy Intensive Industries Compensation Scheme, and intends to increase the aid intensity to up to 100%.
To support the decarbonisation of non-domestic buildings, the Government has introduced targeted business rates exemptions for eligible plant and machinery used in onsite renewable energy generation and storage, and a 100% relief for eligible low-carbon heat networks with their own rates bill.
How else is the government planning to tackle rising commercial energy prices?
There will be no business rates due on a range of green technology used to decarbonise buildings, including solar panels and batteries, whilst eligible heat networks will also receive 100% relief. Together, the government says these measures will save businesses more than £200 million over the next five years.
In addition, the government’s new Energy Security Strategy outlined new measures across hydrocarbons, nuclear and renewables to support energy resilience and security while delivering more affordable energy to consumers.
How can Enexus help businesses combat rising energy prices?
Enexus Energy develops bespoke, innovative strategies to optimise the way your business purchases, generates and consumes energy.
We can help you take proactive measures for your 2022 business energy contracts. We can track the market on your behalf, source the very best prices and suggest alternative contract structures to ensure you buy energy in the most cost-effective way. We can also help you reduce consumption and guide you to lasting savings on your energy costs.
To see how we can help, please get in touch:
Tel: 01253 966 960