Speaking after addressing a group of young people in a business start-up centre in central London, Mr Clegg warned that it was wrong-headed of people to think that by scrapping levies it would be a case of “with one bound we are free”.
He told The Daily Telegraph: “Like everyone else I want us to strain every sinew to keep those bills down – but I don’t think anyone should think that by scrapping all the levies that exist suddenly with one bound we are free. We won’t.
“Actually what will happen is that you will have less investment, probably higher bills over time and an increase in fuel poverty. That cannot be the right answer.”
Actually, I know the answer to this. It’s that world in which no one in Europe fracks for shale and thus gas prices go from the current 40 p a therm to 80 p a therm.
All of the DECC numbers depend upon this assumption. However, if fracking does go ahead then gas prices will not double (the Poyry report states this quite clearly).
In the spreadsheet world they have constructed energy bills do become cheaper with greenery. But it all relies upon that not shale. If we do have shale then greenery will not make bills cheaper: greenery will make bills more expensive.
And that is, I’m afraid, the trick they are relying upon.