Thank you to all those who contacted me about fuel poverty and home insulation.
One of the reasons our energy bills are so high is the Government’s failure to insulate homes. Indeed, after cuts to energy efficiency programmes in 2013, insulation rates fell by 92%. If they had continued at their previous rate for the last decade, an estimated nine million households would be paying less on their bills. Instead, we have some of the worst insulated homes in Europe.
Insulating cold, draughty homes should therefore be a priority. It is for this reason that I support a warm homes plan that would reduce energy demand by insulating the 19 million homes across the country below EPC band C over the next decade. I have long supported calls for such action – if the Government had acted on them, we could have insulated two million of the coldest homes by the winter just gone, saving the typical household large amounts every year on their energy bills. This is something that we could start doing right now and which would also create thousands of jobs across the country.
More widely, I also believe we should take action to reduce bills in the longer term through accelerating cheap, homegrown renewables. I support plans to deliver a fossil fuel-free electricity system by 2030, including by quadrupling offshore wind, more than tripling solar power and more than doubling our onshore wind capacity, as well as establishing a publicly owned clean energy company to make Britain an energy independent superpower. This would save UK households hundreds of pounds per household every year until 2030.