TWO weeks ago, Brussels decided that the green agenda is damaging European growth.

They announced that renewable energy subsidies have cost EU citizens billions of euros.

And, while electricity prices in Europe have risen by 40 per cent, prices in the US have plummeted since 2005.

With Europe in economic turmoil, and politicians looking for solutions, cheaper energy is a most welcome life-raft.

Consequently, the EU is now encouraging ‘fracking,’ extracting gas using high-pressure water pumped into underground shale beds.

This momentous U-turn was barely noticed in Britain.

Here, we remain committed to producing 20 per cent of our energy from renewable sources by 2020.

The aim is to cut carbon emissions, blamed for climate change.

Indeed, if proposed amendments to this week’s Energy Bill had passed, we would have promised even more stringent emissions targets by 2030.

The Bill virtually ignores the possibility of boosting our energy supplies using the vast reserves of shale gas under our country.

Yet ensuring continuity of supply in future is paramount.

But, rather than deal with this potential crisis, the Energy Bill increases the subsidies for wind-farms and solar panels to £7.6 billion a year.

A recent House of Commons library report suggested that such subsidies have put 50,000 Britons into ‘fuel poverty’, defined as spending a tenth of household income on energy.

I was one of 101 MPs who wrote to the Prime Minister, asking for these payments to be cut.

Of course, I am keen we explore more environmentally friendly ways of running our economy, but we have to deal with reality.