Climate Change is probably the greatest long term challenge facing the human race. The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has overall responsibility for tackling climate change, but DTI has a major interest as a number of policies and measures affect the energy sector and business. Along with Defra and the Department for Transport, DTI shares a Public Service Agreement target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in line with UK Kyoto commitment and domestic goal. This paper presents an assessment of the current balance of efforts towards energy research and development (R&D) in the promotion of low-carbon electricity technologies in the UK and investigates the UK’s main technological options in the medium term and the energy R&D spending with the current and expected future cost of renewable promotion policies. Policy and funding responsibilities for energy research, development and demonstration in the UK are fairly complex (perhaps this is inherently an issue in all countries, due to the wide range of sectors and government departments with a key interest). The signs that an energy R&D renaissance in the UK could be underway are positive and welcome.