Sunak expected to revoke ban on onshore wind as early as today to see off back bench rebellion

The prime minister could bring forward plans to loosen rules on building onshore wind turbines, in the hopes off seeing off a Tory backbench rebellion, Anushka Asthana reports

Conservative backbenchers are looking at the government's offered compromise on onshore wind, as the prime minister tries to stave off a potential rebellion on the energy bill. 

Sources tell me that MPs plan to lay down a written ministerial statement that will bring forward plans to loosen the planning rules to allow developments in England to go ahead- if there is community support. 

The changes - which I understand will have immediate effect- will lift an effective moratorium on onshore wind in England.

It is not yet clear whether the wording will be enough for those MPs who have signed an amendment tabled by former Cop26 president, Alok Sharma.

Government whips were worried about losing the vote - particularly given Labour's support. 

Among the potential rebels are former leader Liz Truss, former levelling up secretary Simon Clarke and MP Kevin Foster who told ITV News that onshore wind needed to be a part of the country's energy mix. 

Mr Sharma has said Rishi Sunak promised late last year to tackle planning rules which are so strict that just one person opposing a windfarm is enough to stop it going ahead.

But there have been no signs of the change actually coming into place. 

Sources insist the changes were always coming but will now be brought into force with immediate effect. 

The energy bill has also seen amendments from many other Tories on both sides of the net zero argument.

Those linked to the Conservative Environment Network (which has well over a hundred members) also want subsidies for clean aviation fuel.

They also want the so called "pavement tax" -that means it costs more in VAT to charge electric car vehicles in public spaces than at home - to be scrapped. 

Those who are more sceptical about the speed at which we head to net zero want the bill to start with a duty on the Secretary of State (newly appointed Claire Coutinho) to ensure measures do not inflict a cost on consumers or businesses. 

The prime minister has already scrapped plans for a hydrogen levy that was also opposed by the sceptics. 

The push for more onshore wind has a lot of support in the party.

When he was chair of the Climate Change Committee - Tory peer Lord Deben told me that net zero would be very difficult to achieve without onshore wind within the mix. 

But there are others in the party who fear the impact among communities who do not want the turbines in their areas.

That was why Mr Sunak initially reversed Liz Truss's plan to lift the ban during her short time as prime minister. 

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