Energy Seminar – Week 1: Energy policy at a time of multiple crises: is the UK government getting it right?

Jim Watson - speaking in person and online

Jim Watson, Professor of Energy Policy and Director of the Institute of Sustainable Resources, University College London (UCL).

Summary:  Energy policy has rarely been so challenging. The imperative to rapidly reduce emissions to climate change has been reinforced by increasing evidence of climate change impacts. During the past year, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has accelerated increases in oil and gas prices, with serious implications for Europe and many other regions of the world. This has piled pressure on households and businesses who have faced unprecedented increases in energy bills. This lecture will discuss these pressures, and how they have affected energy policy objectives of sustainability, security and affordability. It will also examine the policy response in the UK. In common with many other countries, the UK government has responded with a strategy for energy security and large scale subsidies for households and businesses. But many have questioned this strategy and subsequent policy announcements, particularly the relative lack of action on energy demand and decisions on new fossil fuel development. The lecture will explore whether the government is doing enough, and whether they are getting their energy policy priorities right.

Biography: Jim Watson is Professor of Energy Policy and Director of the Institute of Sustainable Resources, University College London (UCL). He is also Research Director of the FCDO Climate Compatible Growth programme. He was previously Director of the UK Energy Research Centre. His research focuses on climate change, energy and innovation policies. He frequently advises UK government departments and other organisations, and has been a Specialist Adviser with four UK Parliamentary committees. He is chair of the technical advisory group to the World Bank’s Energy Sector Management Assistance Programme (ESMAP), and a judge for the Queens Awards (sustainable development).

Tweet link opens new window Tweet