The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) has launched a call for evidence on energy as it begins its review of how the UK can better balance supply and demand.
The NIC was launched by chancellor George Osborne in October to identify the UK’s future infrastructure needs and was given three main areas of focus: northern connectivity, London’s transport system and energy.
Lord Andrew Adonis, interim chair of the NIC, launched the call for evidence during his recent tour of northern cities, where his focus was on identifying where infrastructure spending could help in the creation of the ‘Northern Powerhouse’.
He said: “The National Infrastructure Commission will look broadly at long-term needs and provide impartial advice to government and parliament.”
The Commission is requesting responses from all interested parties, including industry, local and regional government, NGOs and the wider public, to make submissions. It will use this evidence as it prepares a number of reports to government before 2016’s spending review.
The formation of the NIC sparked a wide reaction from a number of sectors associated with the energy market when it was announced in October. Many called for the commission to recognise energy efficiency as a national infrastructure priority after a report by Frontier Economics claimed energy efficiency frees up energy capacity for other uses and provides public services by reducing carbon emissions and improving health and wellbeing.
It also argued that an energy efficiency programme would meet the criteria applied by HM Treasury for determining their top 40 infrastructure requirements, and would fit with the eight characteristics of infrastructure identified in HM Treasury’s valuation guidance.
The NIC is taking evidence until 8 January 2016, which can be supplied here.
By David Pratt