Hastings and Rye MP Amber Rudd hopes to ‘unleash a new solar revolution’ as a Government cabinet minister.
Prime Minister David Cameron made Mrs Rudd Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on Monday as he formed his new Conservative administration after last week’s general election.
She was previously a minister in the same department from July 2014, and said she wanted to unleash a new ‘solar revolution’ to reduce the country’s carbon emissions, as well as encouraging people to save money on their energy bills.
Speaking to the Observer this week Mrs Rudd said: “I am honoured to have been appointed Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change.
“I am looking forward to getting on with the job. I would also like to thank the residents of Hastings and Rye for the opportunity to represent them again; a great privilege and responsibility.
“The Centre for Cities Outlook 2012 report actually ranks Hastings as having the lowest carbon dioxide emissions per capita in comparison with 64 other towns. Looking ahead, my task is to build on such achievements.
“We need to shout loud about the benefits of switching energy tariffs; I will continue to urge people across the country to take advantage of the most competitive energy market we have ever had so they can save hundreds of pounds on their energy bills.
“We need to work to ensure that as many homes as possible have sufficiently insulated walls and lofts to further reduce energy waste.
“I want to unleash a new solar revolution- we have a million people living under roofs with solar panels and that number needs to increase.
“My ambition in my new role is quite simple: to keep the lights on and carbon emissions down, whilst saving consumers money on their energy bills.”
Campaign group Friends of the Earth appeared to welcome Mrs Rudd’s appointment.
Simon Bullock, senior climate change campaigner at the group, said: “Amber Rudd has already acknowledged the need to boost renewables and increase investment in energy efficiency – and importantly she recognises the devastating impact that climate change will have without action.
“Her department now needs to make urgent decisions to get the UK off fossil fuels, not least by phasing out dirty coal, and reducing our energy demand and carbon emissions through major investment in energy efficiency and clean renewable power.”