Archived press release
Fuel poverty plan lacks funding and ambition
Reacting to the Government’s announcement today of a package to tackle fuel poverty, Friends of the Earth’s greener homes campaigner, Dave Timms, said:
“Energy efficiency is the long-term solution to the scourge of fuel poverty – but today’s proposal lacks ambition and funding and falls well short of the urgent action that is desperately required."
"A comprehensive programme to slash domestic energy waste would cut soaring fuel bills, tackle climate change and help reduce the UK's dependency on coal, oil and gas. This should be kick-started by a windfall tax on energy firms’ profits."
"Ministers are still failing in their legal duty to end fuel poverty. This is why Friends of the Earth and Help the Aged are taking the Government to the High Court next month to force it to keep its promise.”
Friends of the Earth and Help the Aged are taking the Government to court on 6-7 October because it is failing to keep its legal duty to eradicate fuel poverty. The Warm Homes and Energy Conservation Act 2000 obliged the Government to take measures to eradicate all fuel poverty in England by 2016 and for vulnerable groups by 2010. Despite this commitment, fuel poverty is still increasing.
Friends of the Earth recently signed a Fuel Poverty Charter with other leading charities and consumer groups which sets out a 10 point plan for solving fuel poverty.
1. Friends of the Earth is calling on the Government to announce a comprehensive national programme of home energy efficiency and renewable energy installation:
• At least an extra £3 billion must be invested every year.
• All properties must be brought up to a minimum energy efficiency standard, starting with the homes of the fuel poor;
• Everyone in the UK should be given the opportunity and financial support to make their home super-energy efficient and have renewable energy systems installed;
• Measures must be offered for free to all low income and vulnerable households;
• Conventional measures should be available, such as 270 mm loft insulation, cavity wall insulation, super-efficient boilers and thermostats, hot water tank insulation, draft-proofing and double or triple glazing;
• Also included must be more ambitious energy efficiency and renewable energy measures, for example solid wall and under-floor insulation, heat pumps, solar thermal, solar PV, combined heat and power systems, community wind and biomass boilers. Not all renewable energy measures are appropriate for every home, but every home should be installed with at least one type of renewable energy system.
• Also, crisis payments to low income and vulnerable households should be provided to help people heat their homes this winter.
2. Fitting proper insulation and renewable energy would result in fuel bills and carbon emissions in UK homes being slashed by two thirds. (Home Truths, Dr Brenda Boardman of Oxford University, November 2007: www.foe.co.uk/campaigns/climate/news/green_homes_home_truths.html