Time to end Britain’s cold home crisis, politicians told

February 1st, 2015

Business and charity bosses today call on the political parties to make properly insulating Britain’s homes a non-negotiable priority for whoever forms the next Government.

Chief executives of over 80 businesses, charities and unions have written to the leaders of the three main parties demanding they put energy efficient homes at the top of their agenda. The letter calls for politicians to use infrastructure funds to back a national scheme to make homes super-energy efficient.

Bosses at Age-UK, B&Q and Knauf are among the signatories to the letter, written on behalf of the Energy Bill Revolution, the world’s biggest fuel poverty campaign. The letter, sent to Cameron, Clegg and Miliband, asks for meaningful promises on home energy efficiency, rather than empty rhetoric.

Today’s letter will pile pressure on the Treasury to allocate infrastructure funds for a bold new economic approach to home energy efficiency. Recent research finds that prioritising home energy efficiency as a UK infrastructure priority would add £13.9 billion annually to the UK economy by 2030, with GDP boosted by £3.20 for every £1 invested by the Government.

More energy efficient homes would be good news for taxpayers too. A national programme to super-insulate British homes would generate £1.27 in tax revenue for every £1 invested by the Government.

Making British homes energy-efficient will help households across the country keep their homes warm- and is considered by experts as the only long term solution to fuel poverty. A long-sighted approach to home energy efficiency would result in £8.6 billion in energy savings per year by 2030, an average energy saving of £335 per household.

The scheme would help increase employment with the home insulation sector struggling amidst the failure of the Government’s Green Deal. Keeping Britain warm would not only save lives, but also create up to 108,000 new jobs.

Additional benefits would be to cut gas imports by 25%, boosting energy security. Additionally, making our homes more efficient would cut carbon emissions from homes by 23.6 million tonnes per year by 2030 – roughly equivalent to cutting the CO2 emissions of the UK’s entire transport fleet by one third.

Britain’s homes are amongst the worst insulated in Europe. More people die of the cold in Britain than in freezing Sweden, with thousands dying each year unnecessarily of the cold.  The UK ranks second only to  Estonia for fuel poverty due to appalling standards of energy efficiency.


Ed Matthew of the Energy Bill Revolution said:

“Today we call on the major parties to end the scandal of our winter death figures and make home energy efficiency a non-negotiable infrastructure priority. No other infrastructure investment can achieve such a powerful combination of economic, social and environmental benefits.  It is time to prioritise investment in the infrastructure that can bring benefit to every UK citizen – their homes.”


John Sinfield, the Managing Director of Knauf Insulation Northern Europe said:

“Warm homes help improve performance at school, university and reduce hospital admissions in vulnerable groups. But many homes are not up to standard, and we have scandalously high excess winter deaths in the UK. It is already clear that current schemes are not fit to deliver warm homes in 2016 without substantial change. To avoid a lame duck policy, with the UK falling even further behind our EU competitors, all political parties need to step up and make warm homes an infrastructure priority for their first 100 days in Government.”


Notes to Editors

The Energy Bill Revolution is calling for parties to commit to using infrastructure funds to make 2 million low-income homes highly energy efficient by 2020, and to bring all low income homes up to the same level by 2025. No other investment will achieve such a powerful combination of economic, social and environmental benefits.

Today’s letter was sent to the leaders of the Conservatives, Liberal Democrats and Labour. Although Labour has committed to making home energy efficiency an infrastructure priority they have not yet committed to using the infrastructure budget to do so.

Find out more about the Energy Bill Revolution here.

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