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Energy efficiency measures fall by 60% ‘due to government policy’



A report by the Association for the Conservation of Energy has blamed the government’s policies for the steep 60% decline in home energy efficiency installations.

Research commissioned by the campaign group Energy Bill Revolution shows installations like cavity, soft wall and loft insulation had dropped to 661,000 installations in 2013/14 from 1.62 million a year earlier.

The group says this trend is set to continue, and that the decline could lead to an increase in overall energy bills for the approaching winter.

Thirteen million homes are still in need of energy-saving boilers, 5m need cavity wall insulation and 7.5m households are still in need of loft insulation.

Campaigners argue the government’s decision to axe the ‘warm front’ scheme is the primary reason behind the decline. The scheme was the only one of its kind, where low-income households would receive state-funded energy efficiency installations.

The government’s flagship green deal programme was described as particularly ineffective, according to the report, and continuously failed to deliver on its objectives.

Targets set by the government’s Committee on Climate Change to tackle fuel poverty were frequently missed, including the insulation of all remaining cavity walls and lofts by 2015, and the 2.2 million solid walls by 2022.  

Talking to the Guardian, Ed Matthew, director of the Energy Bill Revolution campaign, said, “The government’s energy efficiency policies are in free fall.

“As a result, fuel poverty is getting worse and people are dying. The government must make home energy efficiency an infrastructure investment priority to put the funding in place to end this scandal once and for all.”

Photo: Chris RubberDragon via Flickr

Further reading:

Make ‘cold and draughty’ UK homes energy efficient, new coalition says

Zero-carbon homes pledge to be dropped in Queen’s speech

Queen’s speech 2014: the reaction

Government consultation on zero-carbon homes welcomed by industry

Green building industry: zero-carbon buildings have ‘vast economic benefits’