Using 100% renewables and nuclear power is the path to lower bills

Ed Miliband - Geoff Pugh for the Telegraph

Ed Miliband – Geoff Pugh for the Telegraph

Labor’s promise that all of the UK’s electricity will come from renewables and nuclear by 2030 will reduce household bills, Ed Miliband has said.

Mr Miliband, the party’s shadow climate change secretary, also insisted that people were happy to live near onshore wind farms.

In an interview for this weekend’s Chopper’s Politics podcast, which you can listen to using the audio player below, Mr Miliband said it was in the interest of the new Sunak government to push harder for more green energy.

He said: “People at home are worried about energy bills and one of the surprising things was when Rishi Sunak said, ‘Well, I have some household issues I need to worry about, not the climate crisis.

“The climate crisis is domestic politics, but it’s also the path to lower bills. It’s the path to jobs. It’s the path to energy security.”

Labor’s pledge aimed for a “clean energy sprint” to have 100% of the country’s electricity supplied “by renewables and nuclear” by 2030.

He said: “We would be the first major country in the world to do that. And we’re doing it for the climate, but we’re also doing it to cut bills – a huge economic opportunity.

“Whether you care about the climate or not, it’s the right thing to do. Green energy is the future because it’s cheaper.”

wind farms - José Sarmento Matos/Bloomberg

wind farms – José Sarmento Matos/Bloomberg

Part of this will be a lifting of the ban since 2015 on onshore wind farms.

He said: “Seventy-five percent of people support onshore wind, including a majority of Conservative voters. You’re more likely to support them if you live near them.”

Asked if he had solar panels on his roof, Mr Miliband said: “I don’t. Partly because they got rid of the feed-in tariffs that made it economical. I am an electric car driver.

Mr. Miliband will attend next week’s meeting for the UN Cop27 meeting on climate change in Egypt.

He said he was “happy” that Mr Sunak, the Prime Minister, had organized an overhaul of the Eleventh Hour and was now in attendance.

“I’m glad he’s gone – he was ashamed of it, frankly, wasn’t he? [Boris] Johnson was leaving. His cop chief, Alok Sharma, said “you should go.”

“I think it shows what Rishi Sunak’s instincts are. It’s not really his thing. It’s not what he’s passionate about.”

‘I care’

Mr Miliband praised Alok Sharma, the government’s spokesman on climate change, saying the couple were in “emoji texting conditions”.

Mr Sharma was ‘grabbed’ by the need to help the environment, he said: ‘I get on very well with Alok. We are on ‘sms emoji’ terms. The last one was a smiley.

Asked if he was the ‘Al Gore’ of British politics, he replied: “I care. It’s one of the reasons I’m still in frontline politics.

“If there was a Labor government and if I was appointed Secretary of State for Net Zero Climate I would have a chance to make a difference on this issue.”

To listen Chopper’s Politicsthe Telegraph’s weekly political podcast, using the audio player at the top of this article or on Apple podcast, Spotify or your favorite podcast app.

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