Energy Security and Net Zero – in the House of Commons on 28th February 2023.
The Government continued to make good progress on our pathway to net zero in 2021. The UK’s net territorial greenhouse gas emissions were estimated to be 427 million tonnes. That is 48% lower than they were in 1990.
I know that the Secretary of State and Ministers know the importance of carbon capture, usage and storage, not only to be able to reach our net zero targets, but for the huge job opportunities available in my constituency of Great Grimsby. Can my right hon. Friend please tell me when track 2 of the CCUS cluster sequencing programme will be launched?
My hon. Friend did a terrific job, I recall, as a Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Whip briefly in the past year. She is absolutely right about carbon capture, utilisation and storage. We have the potential for 78 billion tonnes of CO2 to be stored. The answer to her track 2 question is: very shortly.
While I welcome the grants of up to £5,000 that the Government are making available for boiler replacement, as the Secretary of State will know, a heat pump will cost £8,000 to £15,000, so many of our constituents would not be able to afford it even with that grant, and 90,000 such grants do not constitute a plan to decarbonise the 23 million homes in this country that have gas boilers. When do the Government intend to come forward with such a plan?
I think heat pumps are rather like the solar panels we were just discussing in previous questions. When I had my solar panels installed 12 years ago, they were extremely expensive and had a very long return, although they have finally returned on that; they are now much cheaper. I think we are seeing the same process with air source heat pumps. I note that two suppliers, Octopus and British Gas, have announced £3,000 and £2,500 air source heat pumps—after the Government £5,000, I should say—which means they start to become within reach of ordinary boilers. There is clearly much more to do, but I absolutely share the right hon. Member’s enthusiasm for them.