George Osborne has announced a new gas strategy is being published while the government is consulting on tax incentives for shale gas.
In his autumn statement, the chancellor said the government will create an Office for Unconventional Gas, to maximise economic production from UK natural gas resources.
‘This will join up responsibilities across government, provide a single point of contact for investors and ensure a simplified and streamlined regulatory process,’ said Osborne. ‘The government will also consult on the tax regime for shale gas.’
He added: ‘The government’s gas generation strategy will set out its view of the expected role for gas in the coming years. The government expects up to 26 gigawatts (GW) of new gas capacity could be required by 2030 on current carbon budgets.’
The chancellor is reported to be planning 30 gas-fuelled power stations by 2030, to boost infrastructure investment and help drive long-term growth, according to reports.
Last week, the energy bill was passed which outlined a subsidy for low-carbon energy, including nuclear.
David Cameron, speaking shortly before the budget, said: ‘The entry of the energy bill now means we can sell to all the energy companies a clear framework for offshore wind, renewables and gas...We need to make sure that results in British jobs and British apprenticeships’
The moves are part of a plan to provide certainty to investors to bring forward up to £110 billion of investment in new infrastructure to meet the UK’s future energy needs.