Weekly Email News – the future of the building industry

Pressure builds on government

Almost two thirds (59%) of the public think the government is not doing enough to improve energy efficiency in British homes, according to latest YouGov poll results.

That is why a coalition of 60 organisations from big business to environment groups and major trade associations is calling on the government to strengthen its Energy Bill to prove it is serious about ‘being the greenest government ever’.

Public pressure is now mounting on MPs to amend the Energy Bill. The poll finds that when informed about the Energy Bill currently being debated in parliament, more than half the population (54%) want their MPs to vote for improvements to the Bill that will ground the energy efficiency programme in the need to deliver towards meeting the existing legally binding carbon emission reduction targets.

The legislation, which is currently passing through Parliament, is too weak to deliver on the government’s intentions to slash UK carbon emissions and create thousands of new ‘green’ jobs – it will not equip the UK to meet its legally binding carbon reduction targets of 34% cuts by 2020, 60% cuts by 2030 and 80% by 2050 or reduce fuel poverty, according to Stop Climate Chaos.

Almost three in five people (59%) think the government, which David Cameron publicly committed to being the ‘greenest government ever’, is not doing enough to improve energy efficiency in British homes. Two thirds of the population (65%) believe it should be doing more to make it easier and cheaper for the public to improve energy efficiency in their homes.

A significant percentage of people (69%) is concerned to some degree about the size of their home energy bills, rising to 78% among 45-54 year-olds – just 1% behind retired respondents at 79%.

The research was commissioned by Stop Climate Chaos (SCC), a coalition of environmental and development charities, unions, health, faith, community and women’s groups. SCC is working with a wider coalition of 60 supporting organisations including consumer groups, trade associations, and major businesses to demand improvements to the Energy Bill so the energy efficiency programme enacted will deliver the necessary carbon reductions and tackle fuel poverty. As it currently stands, the Bill is not fit for purpose without amendments.

Richard Diment, director general of the Federation of Master Builders said: “The Energy Bill could have the potential to make significant energy efficiency improvements to our homes and help lower greenhouse gas emissions, but the government must be much clearer about exactly what the Green Deal should achieve if it is to succeed.”