Amber Rudd has been appointed the new secretary of state for energy and climate change, taking over from Liberal Democrat Edward Davey.
The Edinburgh University history graduate and former business woman has been promoted after working for the last year as an under secretary of state in the department. She held her seat in the constituency of Hastings and Rye with almost a 5,000-vote lead over her Labour opponent.
In her previous role, Rudd was a champion for the renewable energy sector. The Conservative election manifesto promotes projects such as Hinkley Point C and Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon, while Rudd is keen to invest and support projects in carbon capture and storage.
Speaking at the Solar Energy UK event in October last year, she praised the solar industry for the work it had done so far and for the job creation in the market. But Rudd also set goals for making solar power a financially independent, cost competitive industry.
“Our ultimate goal is for renewables to be competitive with other forms of electricity generation, and we need to balance government support with the need for value for money for taxpayers,” she said.
Rudd will need to take note of a warning from the Competition Market Authority (CMA) earlier this year.
The CMA said that contracts for difference, introduced last year as part of the government’s controversial energy market reforms, could suffer from a lack of competition.
Top three infrastructure items in Rudd’s in-tray
- Continuing the energy market reforms to meet targets without over burdening tax or bill payers.
- Helping to steer renewable mega projects such as Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon.
- Keeping the mammoth new nuclear programme on track