Public energy research, development and demonstration (RD&D) spending, UK, 2010 to 2020, £million

Public RD&D spending has increased by almost £300 million between 2010 and 2020. Spending on nuclear and energy efficiency made the largest contribution to total RD&D spend in 2020, at 34% and 26% of total spend, respectively. The proportion of spending on nuclear has increased the most in the last 10 years, from 14% of total spend in 2010 to 34% in 2020. Spending on renewables has decreased in the same period from 33% of total spend in 2010 to 12% in 2020.

Source: International Energy Agency and Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

  1. IEA (2022) Energy Technology RD&D Budget,, All rights reserved.
  2. Energy RD&D data tracks public spending by energy technology and is a reasonable proxy for public climate change innovation spending.  However, it does not include spend on net zero research related to natural resources and land-use and includes some longer-term research unlikely to contribute directly to the net zero by 2050 target.
  3. Public spend data is collected from central government budgets, as well as the budgets of state-owned companies.
  4. Figures are shown in real (2021) prices.