Confidence in EPCs during BREXIT Process

Theresa May last night signed the letter that formally begins the UKs departure from the European Union. This is being hand delivered today to Donald Tusk the European Council President, which starts the 2 year process of negotiations that are enacted  though Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty.

Elmhurst are optimistic about the outcome for the energy assessment industry, and believe that the future of Energy Performance Certificates and Energy Assessment is vital for this country to meet it fuel poverty targets as well as international treaties on Climate Change from the United Nations.

At a time that Government policy is very much about Energy Supply, we are seeing the shoots of optimism surrounding how this Government will target the ‘First Fuel’ which is energy efficiency. The Bonfield review has reported and suggested that there must be a quality framework to help homes in the UK become warmer and more efficient. It is very much based around the foundation of an EPC and the recommendations that are created specific to each property.

Martyn Reed, Managing Director of Elmhurst Energy states that he is optimistic, but had some concern about the uncertainty ahead; "Anyone in business will know that there is nothing more difficult to cope with than uncertainty.

"Whilst Elmhurst Energy believes that the EU have been good for energy efficiency, and our sector, the referendum decision was made, and it is now the responsibility of government to re-establish the economic and political environment, so that businesses can make medium and long term decisions with confidence. 

"Obviously EPCs emanated from an EU directive, and when BREXIT is complete that driver will be gone. Elmhurst is aware, and has inputted into government's post BREXIT plans and all the indications are that energy certificates are here to stay.

"If anything, the UK legislation such as PRS / Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards, which is built upon EPCs, will get landlords to take an active interest in energy efficiency and will, undoubtedly, drive up levels of compliance.

 "It is also important to remember that the 5th Carbon Budget and the Paris Agreement are not EU commitments but relate to the United Nations - they will continue, BREXIT, or no BREXIT. 

"I have no doubt that BREXIT will impact on EPCs but I am totally confident that energy assessment and energy certificates are here to stay. Whilst there is likely to be change at the edges, Elmhurst will be doing its part to ensure that it is change for the good."

So today is a landmark occasion for the UK, and we are assured of ‘bumpy’ ride for the next 2 years where lots of negotiations are taking place surrounding an extremely complex set of laws and regulations. Overriding this, we as a country we know we need to take people out of fuel poverty, we need to manage our energy resources well, irrelevant of politically whether we are in EU or not. The EPC is the base position upon which to make informed choices for families and businesses in the UK. The cheapest form of energy is that we do not use, we need to embrace energy efficiency at a strategic level and we know that Government are aware of this and we believe that we will see momentum in this vital sector.

Stuart Fairlie – Head of Technical

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