Report: Driving Demand - Creating Opportunities for the Commercialisation of Low Carbon Technologies
'I am committed to ensuring that across the full range of government activity we do everything we can to support innovation and accelerate the deployment of low carbon technologies, that means taking on board the excellent ideas of this report.'
David Kidney MP, (then) Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
Between July 2009 and January 2010 Carbon Connect conducted an inquiry examining opportunities for the commercialisation of low carbon technologies in the UK. Low carbon technologies have a crucial role to play in helping the UK to meet its ambitious, legally-binding goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% on 1990 levels by 2050.
A range of key stakeholders gave evidence to the inquiry during a series of six evidence sessions and subsequent private interviews. The inquiry culminated in the report Driving Demand: Creating Opportunities for the Commercialisation of Low Carbon Technologies.
The report stresses the need for government to work to stimulate markets for low carbon technologies in the UK. It argues that no matter how much money government puts in to supporting the research, development and demonstration of low carbon technologies, they will not become commercially viable unless people actually want or need to buy them. With the existence of a clearly-defined market for a technology, private investors are more willing to finance the commercial development of a technology.
The report argues that government should drive demand for low carbon technologies through the public procurement process and through ambitious, farsighted regulatory targets. It also states that government should avoid ‘picking technology winners’ and should value carbon savings evenly regardless of how the carbon is saved.
The report goes on to stress the importance of using policy to encourage companies to measure and reduce the embedded carbon within the goods and services in the products they sell.
Speaking at the launch of the report, David Kidney, Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for Energy and Climate Change said:
'This is a very valuable report and I commend it to everyone'.
Carbon Connect's report on the barriers to the commercialisation of low carbon technologies follows an inquiry co-chaired by Lord Oxburgh, former chairman of Shell UK, and Dr Jonathan (Jack) Frost, Director of Johnson Matthey Fuel Cells.