Utility Week

UTILITY Week 27th February 2015

Utility Week - authoritative, impartial and essential reading for senior people within utilities, regulators and government

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10 | 27th February - 5th March 2015 | utILIty WeeK P olitical scrutiny of utilities is at a 25-year high as we head towards the 2015 general election. Politicians of all persuasions are court- ing votes and setting out their visions for the future of the UK's energy and water sectors. As the election campaigns gain momen- tum and the politicking gets fiercer, now more than ever utilities need to be kept up to date on the ever-changing political landscape. In an exclusive poll for Utility Week, you have outlined just how important the coming election is for the sector (see pie charts, Utili- ties polled, right). Radical reforms could be just over the horizon whatever the result on 7 May, and Utility Week Lobby is here to take you through the key issues, each party's stance, and what it all means. As the major parties outline their plans for the future of the UK economy, utilities will be asking whether they understand the true value of services provided by the energy and water sectors. • How will the new government deal with resilience and sustainability? • How high will social policies and afford- Utilities in the eye of the storm There are ten weeks to go until the nation goes to the polls, and Utility Week Lobby will accompany you up to 7 May and beyond. ability be on the new government's agenda? • What further reforms will there be to the planning system to allow new and significant infrastructure projects to get off the ground? • What does the future fold for Ofgem, Ofwat, Decc and Defra? • How will the new regime affect investor confidence? Utility Week Lobby will take you through the next ten weeks right up to polling day, explaining what it all means and how it could have an impact on the business of utilities. We are also going beyond the 7 May poll- ing day into the new political world, what- ever its colours. A series of high-profile events at this autumn's party conferences and in Westminster over the next year will facilitate dialogue between utilities and poli- ticians at the highest level. Not only are we explaining the policies, we are helping you to set the agenda. So join Utility Week Lobby as we take you through to the general election, talking to the key parties, the key figures, and provid- ing you with the key information you need as Britain heads to the polls. "Short-term pop- ulism is the most dangerous enemy that energy and climate change policy has." Ed Davey – energy secretary (Lib- eral Democrat) renewables champion Davey is also eager to speed up switching to "supercharge" competition. "I support renew- able energy but we need to do it in a way that gives the most value for money." Matthew Hancock – energy minis- ter (conservative) hancock wants to see renewables' reliance on subsidies reduced. he is also an advocate of fracking. "The government is all over the shop on energy." Caroline Flint – shadow energy secretary (Labour) Flint will be charged with deliver- ing ed Miliband's price freeze pledge should her party win. She champions the consumer and pushes for lower – and fairer – bills, as well as a radical reform to the industry that includes replac- ing Ofgem. The contenders UtilityWeekLobby Lobby Election / Party conferences 24 September 2013: Labour leader Ed Miliband stuns the industry by making his energy price freeze promise 4 October 2013: limited Tory response: the then energy minister Michael Fallon calls the price freeze "a con" 2013 2014 11 February 2014: energy secretary Ed Davey urges Ofgem to refer the energy market to the CMA 14 May 2014: Water Act passed, including provisions for non-domestic retail competition and, added at the 11th hour, for the provision for retail exit 27 March 2014: Ofgem refers the energy market to the CMA 20 November 2013: prime minister David Cameron reported saying the government needs to "get rid of the green crap"; publicly he vows to "roll back" green taxes 15 September 2013: Lib Dems agree a policy U-turn at their party conference and vote to support new nuclear and fracking Road to the polls

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