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News 26 February 2019

Energy Saving Trust CEO gives evidence to BEIS Select Committee Inquiry

Energy Saving Trust’s Chief Executive, Philip Sellwood, gave evidence to Parliament’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Select Committee Inquiry into energy efficiency today. Philip’s evidence to the MPs was based on Energy Saving Trust’s written response to the inquiry which we submitted a few weeks ago.

Most strikingly Philip spoke out to committee members about the need for a comprehensive energy efficiency advice service in England to help householders to access support they need. You can see his evidence on the Parliament Live TV service from 10:16am onwards.

The key points Energy Saving Trust is making to the committee are:

  • The government’s Energy Performance Certificate “C” target – for all rented and fuel poor homes by 2030, and for better-off owner occupier households by 2035 – is great. Homes that reach that the “C” standard are considerably cheaper to heat and have lower carbon emissions than the UK average.
  • But though the government proposed this “C” target in its Clean Growth Strategy, the policies and resources aren’t there to hit the target in England. That’s not just our view, but also that of the official advisory bodies, the Committee on Climate Change and the Committee on Fuel Poverty.
  • It’s different in Scotland. Scotland spends four times as much as England per person on energy efficiency. And the Scottish Government has proposed a new roadmap which shows how different homes will be helped to reach the C standard through regulations, support and incentives
  • We need a stronger engagement and advice programme in England and a long term roadmap of home standards (the journey towards “C”), underpinned by regulation, to encourage home owners and private landlords to invest in energy efficiency.
  • Government funding should then be available to help with upfront costs, and to directly finance improvements in fuel poor owner-occupier homes, social housing, and cold homes which are less cost-effective to improve.
  • We highlight cuts to – and the need for new policies and investment in – householder advice around energy efficiency in England. Meeting EPC “C” is not just about additional direct financing for measures, but also helping householders to take action.  We illustrate how energy advice can work with a description of the Home Energy Scotland comprehensive national energy advice service.
  • MEES regulations – whereby private landlords in England have to bring their homes to an EPC “E” standard before they can rent it out – are an important and welcome step forward. We need a clear process around improving the E to a C standard.

Find our full written response on our policy publications page.

Last updated: 26 January 2021