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‘Stop moaning' and show ambition on green energy, Miliband to tell Government

Ed Miliband will deliver a speech on green energy in London (Stefan Rousseau/PA)
Dominic McGrath, PA

Ed Miliband will call on the Government to “stop moaning” about Joe Biden’s green investment plan when he sets out Labour’s plan to match the Inflation Reduction Act.

The shadow climate secretary will use a speech on Tuesday to stress Labour’s ambition on green investment, amid pressure on the Government to deliver a set of policies that would drive investment in low-carbon technology and match the Inflation Reduction Act in the US and the Green Deal Industrial Plan in the EU.

The Government is expected to unveil its own “energy security” plans in the coming days, with the so-called “Green Day” coming before a deadline to respond to a High Court order and revise its net zero policies.

At an event hosted by the Green Alliance, Mr Miliband will warn that the UK cannot fall behind the US and the EU.

He will say: “What we have seen from the UK Government is the actions of a group of people caught in the headlights. Kemi Badenoch dismisses the Inflation Reduction Act as ‘protectionist’. Our current Energy Secretary Grant Shapps calls it ‘dangerous’. The Chancellor dismisses it too.

“I profoundly disagree with this approach. As the US and Europe speed off into the distance in the global race for green industry, we are sitting back in the changing rooms moaning about the rules. Sore loser syndrome won’t win any jobs for Britain.

“We need to stop moaning about the Inflation Reduction Act and start matching its ambition.”

Mr Miliband will acknowledge that the UK must remain an “open economy” and that “not everything in the green economy could or should be produced here”.

But he will also argue that the UK should not underestimate its own potential.

“Joe Biden wants the future Made in America. We want the future Made in Britain,” he will say.

“Now some people, not just in government, will say we cannot compete with the Inflation Reduction Act. How, they say, can we compete with the United States, with its population five times ours and its huge financial firepower? And throw in the EU and China and they say we need to get real.

“But such defeatism is not just pessimistic but plain wrong.

Keir Starmer visit to Wick
Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and shadow climate change secretary Ed Miliband during a visit to the Beatrice wind farm off the Caithness coast earlier this month (Paul Campbell/PA)

“It misunderstands the reality of the scale of the opportunity presented by the biggest transformation of the global economy in 300 years. And it deeply misunderstands our unique potential as a country to compete and win in this green revolution that has begun.”

Mr Miliband will promise that Labour will deliver a “net zero mandate” for every key regulator, as well as a new national wealth fund to invest in private sector partnerships.

Plans for a new publicly owned energy company, GB Energy, will be “vital”, he will tell the audience.

“Every real leader in zero carbon power has a national champion: EDF in France, Statkraft in Norway, Orsted in Denmark, Vattenfall in Sweden.

“It’s time we had ours.

“In years to come, it will seem absurd that Britain had no public clean energy champion to deliver jobs and wealth as so many of our competitors do. A Labour government will and it will have a clear mission: to build clean energy and do it in Britain.”

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