Cuts in support for renewable energy in the UK have been criticised by the UN’s chief environment scientist. Prof Jacquie McGlade said the UK was shifting away from clean energy as the rest of the world rushed towards it. She said the cuts in renewables subsidies, coupled with tax breaks for oil and gas, sent a worrying signal to the coming UN climate summit in Paris. The UK government says it will meet its targets on carbon emissions in the most cost-effective way.
A spokesman said it was “absolutely committed to getting a global deal in Paris”. Prof McGlade said the UK appeared to have abandoned its leadership on climate change, while 150 other nations were making unprecedented pledges to shift towards clean energy. She told BBC News: “What I’m seeing worldwide is a move very much towards investment in renewable energy. To counterbalance that you see the withdrawal of subsidies and tax breaks for fossil fuels.
“What’s disappointing is when we see countries such as the United Kingdom that have really been in the lead in terms of getting their renewable energy up and going – we see subsidies being withdrawn and the fossil fuel industry being enhanced.”