Many remarkable things happened immediately after the Brexit referendum. One is often overlooked: The House of Commons adopted the Fifth Carbon Budget, reaffirming the targets of the Climate Change Act 2008. More than half of the greenhouse gas emission reduction in the UK is due to policies and measures that originate in Brussels rather than in London. In 2014, one quarter of UK emission reductions were achieved by paying companies in Eastern Europe to reduce theirs instead. Brexit will have a profound effect on three central planks of UK climate policy – nuclear power, interconnection, and permit trade – but the government pretends that nothing will change.
When he was energy secretary, Ed Miliband pushed nuclear power as a zero-carbon option to provide baseload electricity.