UPDATE 1-UK needs to invest more in low-CO2 tech -advisors

* Without more support, low-carbon tech in ‘valley of death’

* Current funding of 550 mln stg/yr is minimum needed

(Adds detail)

By Nina Chestney

LONDON, July 19 (BestGrowthStock) – Britain needs to invest more in
low-carbon technologies to reach its goal of cutting harmful
greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050, a climate
advisory body to the government said on Monday.

The UK aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80
percent by 2050 from 1990 levels to help fight climate change.

As part of this goal, low-carbon technologies will be vital
to generate cleaner forms of electricity for electric vehicles,
heating and delivering energy-efficient buildings, the Committee
on Climate Change (CCC) said in a report.

“Without government support, a range of essential low-carbon
technologies are likely to get stuck in a so-called ‘valley of
death’, where development is curtailed, and will fail to make it
to market,” it said in the report.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) said on
Friday it was reducing its low-carbon expenditure by 34 million
pounds ($52.15 million) as part of a savings programme across
government departments to reduce the public deficit.

DECC said it would spend over 150 million pounds on low-
carbon technology this year.

“It is unfortunate there has been that cut. It is a move in
the wrong direction but it is specific to this year. Our focus
is not the short-term but what happens in October in the
(government’s) comprehensive spending review,” David Kennedy,
chief executive of the CCC, said at a briefing in London.

The CCC estimates total government funding for low-carbon
development during 2009-2010 amounts to 550 million pounds,
which is the minimum amount needed to avoid missing the UK’s
carbon budgets and opportunities to build a greener economy.

Up to five times more public support for energy research,
development and deployment (RD&D) is needed, Kennedy added.

LAGGING BEHIND

Britain’s spending on energy RD&D as a percentage of gross
domestic product lags behind other developed countries.

“By international standards our spending is very low here.
The U.S. spends three times as much as we do relative to GDP on
low-carbon innovation,” Kennedy told the BBC’s Radio Four early
on Monday.

To support the development of technology, the UK needs to
focus on developing and deploying offshore wind, wave and tidal
power, carbon capture and storage (CCS) including gas, smart
grids and meters, electric vehicles and aviation.

“The UK should also deploy nuclear power, advanced
insulation technologies, CCS for industry and heat pumps,” the
committee said in the report.

It should also be investing in the research and development
of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, third generation solar
photovoltaic technology, electricity storage and advanced
bio-fuel technology.

Currently, the funding which supports low-carbon innovation
is complex and difficult for business to navigate. The
government needs to strengthen the framework to ensure public
money is well spent, the CCC added.
(Editing by Jane Baird)

UPDATE 1-UK needs to invest more in low-CO2 tech -advisors