UK’s newly appointed Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, Ed Miliband, announced the launch of Mission Control for Clean Power 2030, a new initiative aimed at accelerating the UK transition away from fossil fuel and towards clean and locally generated energy.

The government also announced the appointment of Climate Trust CEO and former Chief Executive of the Climate Change Committee (CCC), Chris Stark, to head the new Mission Control program.

According to the government, Mission Control will be a one-stop shop, bringing together a team of industry experts and officials to troubleshoot, negotiate, and clear the way for energy projects. It will work with key energy companies and organizations including the regulator Ofgem, the National Grid and the Electricity System Operator (ESO) to speed up the connection of new power infrastructure to the grid, and bring cleaner, cheaper power to people’s homes and businesses.

Energy Security and Net Zero Secretary Ed Miliband said:

“Years of underinvestment has left our country suffering energy insecurity, with working people paying the price through their energy bills and a cost-of-living crisis. That cannot happen again. This new Mission Control centre, benefitting from the expertise and experience of Chris Stark’s leadership–and bringing together the brightest and best in the national interest–will have a laser-like focus on delivering our mission of clean power by 2030.”

Stark joins the new center from global climate consultancy the Carbon Trust, where he has been serving as CEO since January. Prior to joining Carbon Trust, he spent more than a decade advising UK governments, including 6 years at the CCC, serving as the UK’s chief climate change adviser, leading independent advice on the UK’s Net Zero target, and the development of multiple pathways to ensure the whole economy could meet this target, and as Director of Energy and Climate Change for the Scottish Government. He is currently Honorary Professor at the University of Glasgow’s Centre for Public Policy, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and on the board of climate charity Murmer.

Key focus areas for the Mission Control for Clean Power will focus on setting and tracking the overall approach to delivering on the government’s 2030 clean power missions across the energy system, real-time monitoring of progress on UK infrastructure projects critical to the 2030 objectives, acting as an innovation center by encouraging discussion among experts, and serving as a convener for the Mission Control approach across government and with industry.

Stark, said:

“Tackling the climate crisis and accelerating the transition to clean power is the country’s biggest challenge, and its greatest opportunity.  By taking action now, we can put the UK at the forefront of the global race to net zero – driving down our carbon emissions but also cutting bills for households. It is a privilege to head up this work alongside the country’s top energy experts who will make this mission a reality.”