Improving energy efficiency in homes should be a national priority, industry body claims

Improving energy efficiency in homes should form part of a national infrastructure programme and therefore paid for through taxes, a recent report from industry body Energy UK has argued.

Currently, improvements to the energy efficiency of homes are paid for through a levy on consumer bills, but the report called for any subsidies for a national programme to be funded from general taxation to avoid unfairly hitting those in fuel poverty.

Those who are able to pay for improvements to the homes they own, including landlords, should be encouraged to do so with regulations and attractive loans, grants, tax incentives and stamp duty rebates, it said.

Improving the efficiency of homes will cut consumer costs as they will use less energy, with a report by the Government’s Committee on Climate Change revealing bills were down over the past eight years because of more efficient appliances

A national infrastructure efficiency programme, for which fuel poverty campaigners have long argued, will help build a strong supply chain and encourage competition, the report argued.

Greater energy efficiency of homes is also needed to make sure that efforts to tackle the greenhouse gas emissions from heating, most of which is supplied by gas, are as effective as possible.

Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, said: “Our new report highlights the need for a long-term, certain and holistic policy framework that will ensure the UK meets its carbon targets at the least cost to consumers.

“The industry believes that energy efficiency should be a national priority to make the transition to a low carbon economy more affordable for both consumers and businesses.

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