Bills to rise as renewable energy projects are approved
However, as ever with new projects, there's some bad news.
The new contracts will include offshore wind farms and the conversion of some coal-powered plants which will eventually run on biomass. Energy Secretary Ed Davey is confident that these projects will help to power up to 3 million homes. 'Help' and 'up to' sticking out like a sore thumb there.
Davey also thinks that they'll attract £12bn in private investment, which is not to be sniffed at.
The new energy projects will be offshore at Outer Moray Firth, offshore at Liverpool Bay, a conversion at Selby, offshore north of Cromer, offshore at Hornsea off the East Yorkshire coast, a biomass conversion at Ashington, Northumberland, an extension offshore off Walney island and at Teeside, biomass with combined heat and power in Middlesbrough.
These eight projects will all get one of the government's Contracts for Difference (CfDs), which basically guarantee prices for renewable energy suppliers. They may cost up to £1bn each year in subsidies.
"We are confident that the eight will go ahead, but if a company decides not to go ahead.... there will be another one queuing up behind," Davey told the Today programme. "These investments are critical to make sure we have got secure, clean energy. The hope, clearly, is to try and rid the country of the need to get energy from Ukraine, now that Russia is throwing its weight around.
The bad news is that it'll cost us, adding (at least) 2% to household energy bills by 2020. While energy companies start announcing price freezes and the like, the money will be coming out of our pockets from elsewhere.