Labour plans to bolster UK’s energy efficiency unveiled in new green manifesto

Boosting the overall energy efficiency of the UK’s housing stock is one of Labour’s main future objectives, the opposition’s energy efficiency green paper was able to reveal.

The plan, entitled ‘An end to cold homes: One Nation Labour’s plans for energy efficiency’, lays out the current problems with British buildings’ energy use, and explains the party’s solutions.

The party’s manifesto argues that, due to the age of many UK properties – nearly 60% are more than 50 years old and, of this, 80% will still be standing by 2050 – Britain’s household energy efficiency is among the worst anywhere in Europe.

These houses are often poorly insulated and, as a result, the average household’s annual energy bill is now more than £1,300 as energy bills have risen by 21% in the last four years.

Labour says this increase is “twice as fast as inflation, four times faster than wages and faster than almost anywhere else in the developed world.”

Consequently the number of households in fuel poverty is forecast to increase to 2.33 million – a household is considered to be in fuel poverty if they are required to spend more than 10% of their income to keep their home to a satisfactory standard.

The oppositions’ plans to tackle the aforementioned problems include the provision of half a million personalised home energy reports a year, detailing how households could save money on their energy bills through insulation and energy efficiency.

Additional measures include a free energy efficient improvements for 200,000 households in or at risk of fuel poverty a year, with an ambition to upgrade all such homes and end the scandal of cold homes within 15 years, saving the average household over £270 a year, as well as interest free loans to cover the costs of energy efficiency improvements for up to one million households during the next Parliament.

The opposition plans to set a new target to upgrade properties in the private rented sector to a minimum of an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) C by 2027, while also making sure that energy efficiency is designated as a national infrastructure priority under Labour’s proposed National Infrastructure Commission.

Last, but certainly not least, the manifesto argues that the party plans to streamline regulations and sets a long-term strategy to support investment in energy efficiency in non-domestic buildings.

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