In the United Kingdom legislation about energy has tended to be a mish-mash of silly subsidies and wishful thinking. The present proposed Energy Bill is no different.
The silly subsidies arise because of provisions that will provide a very large de facto subsidy for nuclear power, probably in breach of European law. A levy will be placed on household energy bills which will be used to guarantee profits for those who have wind turbine businesses and nuclear power businesses. It seems to me to be an odd way to proceed.
The wishful thinking is the existing commitment for the United Kingdom to meet a legally binding target of 15% of its energy (heat and power) being generated from renewable sources. It the UK fails to meet this target then it will face heavy fines, which the tax payer will have to pay.
Existing energy policy is confused about clean energy and dirty energy, useful energy and useless energy, renewable energy and low carbon energy, and this confusion is apparent in existing policy and in the Energy Bill. It is not surprising that the United Kingdom government is confused. Its laws are shaped by the European Union to a large extent and the EU is similarly confused about energy. Ultimately those in control of the money, the finance ministers and multinational energy and fuel businesses set energy policy. It is as though a free market in energy has made us all slaves of those with money.
Energy policy has long been designed to satisfy many conflicted interests and as a result satisfies none. Of course there must be sufficient power and heat to enable the people to live and work in comfort, people should find energy affordable and it should be clean and it should be reliable but you have to accept that you cannot design a policy that ticks all the boxes. We should decide which box is most important and devise energy policy around that, leaving other policies to mitigate the hardship that might be caused by having a sensible energy policy.