It’s also timely as Britain, and other countries, begin, tentatively, to emerge from the pandemic and realise, after a year like no other in recent history, that the crisis facing the environment is even greater, with the potential to claim even more lives, than Covid-19. It has not gone away; it’s only been masked – briefly – by the virus.
And while very few countries were adequately prepared for a pandemic on this scale, Yorkshire – at the very least – is well-placed to put clean energy, and the environment, at the heart of its recovery mission as political leaders look to rebuild the economy. It now needs to maximise this and the Commission can play a key role. Home to Siemens, which is leading the way when it comes to offshore wind, and world-leading facilities like the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre on the site of the former Orgreave plant, this region already has an abundance of experience – all that is lacking is the necessary investment in infrastructure.
However the supply of sufficient energy – and plants like Drax are crucial to this through the use of biomass pellets – underpins the national economy. After all, Britain will grind to a halt if the lights go out, hence the importance being attached to energy policy.
But this country does have the chance to start setting an example to the world as it prepares to host the G7 and COP 26 summits. And, while Boris Johnson still has some policy contradictions to overcome, his ambitions are laudable and the PM should now do everything possible to advance Yorkshire’s green energy plans for the sake of the planet’s future. It’s called Global Britain in action.
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