The first ever National Infrastructure Assessment has been released by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC).
The report has made a number of recommendations regarding roads; growth of cities; digital technology; low carbon energy.
A key recommendation that has come out of the extensive Assessment is the “golden opportunity” to move away from nuclear energy and instead, move towards renewable energy.
Sir John Armitt, the Chairman of the NIC, said: “They (the government) say full speed. We’re suggesting it’s not necessary to rush ahead with nuclear. Because during the next 10 years, we should get a lot more certainty about just how far we can rely on renewables.”
Regarding the transport industry, there are recommendations in the Assessment that fit in with the wider pattern seen in terms of introducing greener, zero emission vehicles into the sector.
The NIC say that switching to low carbon and renewable sources for the country’s power and heating, as well as a move towards electric vehicles, will mean customers in 2050 will pay the same for energy in real terms as they do today.
The Assessment has recommended 50% of energy from renewables by 2030 and, by the same year, electric vehicle sales to hit 100% – going beyond the Road to Zero Strategy aims set out by the government.
In order to achieve this, the National Infrastructure Assessment has recommended that government should work with local authorities and private companies to deliver a national network of charging points for electric vehicles, ensuring the impacts of connected and autonomous vehicles are taken into account when planning both the next rail control period and road investment strategy.
And Sir John Armitt, believes this National Infrastructure Assessment sets out “realistic” targets.
He said: “This is not some unaffordable wish-list of projects: it sets a clear direction for how to meet the country’s future infrastructure needs, and makes a realistic assessment of what can and should be delivered within the stated aim of Ministers for steady and continued investment over the coming years.”