Davey promises new Lib Dem Green Homes law and £2bn a year for energy efficiency

Energy efficiency will be placed at the heart of a future Liberal Democrat government’s ambitions for greater social justice and economic growth, according to energy secretary Ed Davey.

Davey promised a "Green Magna Carta",  which he described as “breath-taking in ambition” to create a Green Homes law and £2bn a year to revolutionise domestic energy efficiency to ensure that all homes meet an Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) rating of Band C.

“From 2018/19 we will invest £2bn a year in a major investment in domestic energy efficiency that reaches 4M homes by 2020 and 10M homes by 2025.” Ed Davey.

New financial incentives would be included, he said, to prompt homeowners into action with a ten year “feed out” tariff applied to the community charge to give compliant homes a £100 rebate.

“The age of energy efficiency has arrived,” he said. “From 2018/19 we will invest £2bn a year in a major investment in domestic energy efficiency that reaches 4M homes by 2020 and 10M homes by 2025.”

Reform of the Green Deal to a green loan system would also, he said, enable people to borrow more against savings.

Davey also said that a Liberal Democrat government would make energy efficiency measures part of the National Infrastructure Plan and so more central to the nation’s challenge to boost growth and ”end once and for all the institutional bias against energy efficiency investment”.

The Green Constuction Board Three Years On report outlines the acheivements to date and plans for the future. Further details are

Launching the Coalition’s new Fuel Poverty Strategy at Ecobuild this week, Davey said that a Liberal Democrat government would go further by linking fuel poverty to health and creating an effective campaign to improve lives.

Despite latest statistic showing a fall in fuel poverty, Davey insisted that the old strategy had stalled, and that any improvement seen today was not the trelsult of the old approach. 

“At the core of the new strategy is energy efficiency and specific target,” he said highlighting that anyone living in a property performing below an Grade E EPC rating spent £1000 more than they should on heating. 

The strategy will focus on residential landlords as a major route to improving lives and, he said, by April 2018 will make it illegal to rent a property with performance below Band E EPC rating.

“I want to turn fuel poverty into one of the great health campaigns,” he said highlighting the health impacts of living in cold and damp accommodation.

Davey also highlighted work being undertaken by chief construction adviser Peter Hansford for the Green Construction Board to conduct an informal review of the opportunities and challenges that Solid Wall Insulation might create.

This work is in response to the Committee on Climate Change view that 3M solid wall homes would require treatment by 2020 if the UK is to remain on track to meet the Climate Change Act commitments of reducing carbon emissions by 80% by 2050.

According to the GCB’s Three Years On Report published this week this review will broadly tackle the following issues:

  • Cost reduction and innovation
  • Skills and standards
  • Potential
  • Market.

Writing in the GCB report construction minister Nick Boles highlighted the challenges facing ghe industry to reduce carbon and reduce cost.

As recovery takes hold businesses and individuals are starting to take a broader view of value. That creates new opportunities,” Boles wrote in his foreword.

“We believe that this is particularly the case for sustainable construction, particularly on a whole life cost basis,” he added. “These challenges and opportunities are central to Construction 2025 – the industrial strategy for construction.”

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