Britain’s next prime minister must not forego investment in green energy while devising measures to ease the cost of living crisis, Boris Johnson will urge.
In a bid to continue his legacy, the outgoing Prime Minister is expected to tell Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss – the latest candidates in the race to succeed Mr Johnson – that the UK must strengthen its commitment to net zero while supporting households in difficulty, The telegraph reports.
The remarks will likely serve as a warning to the two No 10 hopefuls to stick to Mr Johnson’s ambition to build a new nuclear reactor every year and back a fivefold increase in offshore wind power by 2030.
The expected comments from Mr Johnson will be particularly relevant to the campaign of the Foreign Secretary, who has promised to end green levies on fuel bills.
Ms Truss claimed earlier in her bid for Downing Street that she would only support the 2050 net zero target ‘in a way that does not harm businesses or consumers’.
The leadership favorite is also said to be considering a 5% cut in VAT and an increase in personal income tax allowances.
A government source said The telegraph: “Boris is passionate about energy strategy. There is a desire to say something this week about how everything we have done has kept us in a much better position in the medium and long term, thanks to investments in nuclear and wind.
“All the work in renewable energies will ensure that in the medium and long term we will be more autonomous and this will reduce costs for consumers.
“Over the years, Cop26 to the energy strategy and now with the challenges of the cost of living, it is a real priority. We have the national infrastructure and technology to be more resilient and self-sufficient to manage these challenges.
“We have shown during this year that we can both focus on helping people in the immediate future, but also invest in the medium and long term so that we are not compromised like that again.
“It is clear that we need to help people meet the bills this winter, but there is an even greater need to tackle the supply side and ensure that we have affordable and affordable energy for individuals and businesses as soon as possible. Too many governments have avoided this.
Earlier this month, Mr Johnson gave the green light to funding a new multi-billion pound Sizewell C nuclear reactor in Suffolk, raising concerns among some of Ms Truss’ allies that it could limit its economic vision.
Private funding will be sought for the project, which is estimated to cost between £20 billion and £30 billion.
The government is then expected to make a final decision on public investment early next year, and it is expected to buy a 20% stake in the plant, at a cost of up to £6bn.
Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, who is set to be Ms Truss’ chancellor if she wins the leadership race, is said to be “overwhelmingly” in favor of the plan.