Clean Growth Strategy Announced

This morning Business Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) issued the long awaited ‘Clean Growth Strategy’ which establishes a mission to lead the way to a low carbon future for the UK.

The Document provides a view of the future energy efficiency landscape and underlines some longer term goals for government. Elmhurst has quickly reviewed this important document and have extracted the key points which could impact  energy efficiency in people’s homes and commercial premises.

Effectively the Government know that they must have a strategy to take the UK into a clean energy future, and that lots of policies and strategic decisions are required. Nothing appears to be off the table- a sentiment supported by Energy Minister Claire Perry, who told the BBC Radio 4s Today Programmer that:

“Stamp duty may be changed to encourage people to make their homes more energy efficient, with better insulation. Householders would face "carrots and sticks" to prompt them into saving on heating bills and carbon emissions.”

Elmhurst has reviewed the document and extracted the key points that talk about energy efficiency in people’s homes and commercial premises. We have split these points into three sections (General, Domestic/Residential, Non-Domestic/Commercial):

General

Applicable to Domestic and Non-Domestic 

  • A commitment for a review of Building Regulations for energy efficiency following the current review on Regulations (The Grenfell Review). For both domestic and non-domestic buildings
  • A Green Finance Task Force will be set up to provide recommendations for delivery of the public and private investment that we need to meet carbon budgets
  • Invest in low carbon heating
  • Provide £255million of funding for energy efficiency improvements in England for Public Sector
  • Reinstate a ‘Clean Growth Inter-Ministerial Group’ to monitor the implementation of the strategy
  • Backing the LENDERS project (which Elmhurst helped), to promote the concept of green mortgages.
  • A call to evidence in 2018 to extend EPCs to other trigger points. Looking for ways to make EPCs better.
  • Various points surrounding Building Regulations, but no commitment to zero carbon yet.

Domestic/Residential

  • Continued support for ECO policy and continue until 2028
  • Improve private rented properties to At least Band ‘C’ on the EPC by 2030 ( where practical, cost effective and affordable)
  • Improve standards in new boiler installations
  • Consult in 2018 on how to make MEES in private rented sector more effective 
  • Recognition that domestic fuel bills have reduced over time due to energy efficiency policy, and that more investment is needed
  • Concluding that there is now a clear link between cold homes and ill health – costing the NHS £760 million a year
  • An admission that the current trajectory of policy vacuum for homes will see carbon emission actual rise – therefore action in required – this is called the 2032 Pathway

  • The 2032 Pathway – could see 6-9 million more properties insulated especially those in fuel poverty
  • More broadly the aspiration is that as many homes as possible are EPC band C by 2035 (where practical, cost effective and affordable)
  • A move that could lead to all new homes being off the Gas grid from the mid 2020s – i.e. being heated by low carbon systems
  • Work with Industry to enable the Each Home Counts review – (that again Elmhurst is helping push in the correct direction)
  • Smart Meter Data being able to be used widely to promote energy efficiency
  • Reform of RHI to focus on long term decarbonisation

Non-Domestic/Commercial

  • Consulting on raising the minimum standards for rented commercial building
  • An aim to develop a package of measure that support businesses to be 20% more energy efficient by 2030
  • Government will build upon existing schemes such as Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) making reforms where necessary

Stuart Fairlie Technical Director at Elmhurst comments: “Elmhurst welcomes the long term commitments and goals set out by Government in this important document. We are eager to engage with all Government Departments and Industry to make this happen and look forward to seeing more detail on the specific points made. Our members produce Energy Certificates and calculations and these are the measuring tape by which this nation can start to make informed decisions about all our buildings. We have mentioned previously that there needs to be carrots, sticks and ‘noise’ surrounding all the policies, supported by joined up thinking by different Government Departments– Overall we look forward to making homes and businesses warmer and cheaper to run.”


Link to the full report:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/651232/BEIS_The_Clean_Growth_online.pdf

Other news sites:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41592635

https://www.estateagenttoday.co.uk/breaking-news/2017/10/stamp-duty-reform-could-be-linked-to-energy-efficiency-says-minister

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