Report reveals scale of work needed to hit net zero

An average of 4,000 electric vehicle (EV) charge points and domestic heat pumps will have to be installed each day to meet the UK’s 2050 net zero target, a report has said.

The research, carried out by Capital Economics for ScottishPower and SP Energy Networks, found that 25mn EV charge points and 23mn heat pumps will be required while the cost of transforming the UK’s transport and heating systems, along with upgrading the electricity grid, stands at £286bn by 2050. The expected cost of reinforcing electricity networks was noted as being £48bn, with much of the work and investment having to be in place by 2035.

According to SP Energy Networks, however, costs can be “significantly” reduced by investing in a planned and strategic way if the framework in which networks operate changes. ScottishPower, meanwhile, called for three key actions upon the launch of the report: more power to be devolved so that communities can have a proper say in setting carbon priorities in their area; for plans to start being made now for investments to meet the needs of communities in the transition to net zero; and for all regulation to have the ambition of meeting decarbonisation targets at its core. 

Keith Anderson, CEO of ScottishPower said: “We think this data should be a wake-up call for policy-makers. Zero Carbon targets may seem like a long way off, but if we’re to work with communities properly to ensure people aren’t left behind by the green transition, the reality is there’s no time to lose.”