People are being given the chance to build dozens of nuclear power plants and thousands of onshore wind turbines or convert all cars to electric power – in an online game about the UK’s low carbon future.
The web application allows people to find out how the country is going to meet its target to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, and still keep the lights on.
The My2050 simulation lets the public choose the UK’s future energy mix, from fossil fuels to nuclear power, onshore and offshore wind turbines, biofuels and solar panels on homes.
And they are also able to manage demand for fuel and electricity, by changing the ways and temperatures to which people heat their homes, shifting more travel onto public transport or electric vehicles, and making business greener.
The online application from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) aims to engage people in the decisions that have to be made about the UK’s energy supply, and invites them to let ministers know what they want the country to look like by mid century.
Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne said: “There’s no silver bullet solution to the UK’s energy future.
“This project is about getting to grips with the hard choices and trade-offs which need to be made, choices which will affect our homes, communities and the way we travel.
“We can’t afford to leave it till tomorrow – so get involved today.”
Friends of the Earth climate campaigner Tony Bosworth said: “This new online simulator shows the difficult choices the UK faces to meet it climate targets, but the longer we delay taking action the harder and more expensive it will become.
“There are also huge opportunities – building a cleaner, safer future will create hundreds of thousands of new green jobs, slash energy waste and reduce our dependency on ever more expensive fossil fuels.”