16 September 2015 | Herpreet Grewal
The government should introduce incentives for companies to invest in energy efficiency and innovative low-carbon technologies, according to a report by an employers' group.
The report by EEF - one the county's leading employers' groups - states that the government should reduce the overall burden of energy taxation and levies for companies because current policies aimed at reducing industrial greenhouse gas emissions, centred on taxes and levies have not proved effective.
It says there are five separate but overlapping regulatory programmes attempting to drive energy efficiency and emissions improvements in business, each with its own reporting and compliance obligations and timelines (EU Emissions Trading System, Climate Change Levy and Climate Change Agreements, CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme, Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme, and mandatory green house gas reporting under the Companies Act).
On top of this, businesses' electricity bills include "a baffling range of levies supporting decarbonisation of the grid".
EEF suggests ending the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme (CRC) and if necessary recovering its revenue stream through adjustments to the level of Climate Change Levy paid by former CRC participants.
A new voluntary Energy Efficiency Investment Tax Discount should be introduced, it says.
The report also called for replacing the numerous levies aimed at supporting low-carbon electricity generation on bills with one single low-carbon levy.