Sunday, 20 April 2014

Huhne denies Energy Bill delay will hit green deal

The energy secretary has denied delays to the government’s Energy Bill will affect its flagship home energy efficiency scheme.

In parliament yesterday it was confirmed the Energy Bill will not reach report stage before the summer recess.

But energy secretary Chris Huhne said this would not affect the green deal.

‘We are determined to hold to the October 2012 deadline for the launch of the green deal and are working to ensure that we meet it,’ he said.

The bill contains legislation to introduce the green deal, which would allow householders to get free energy efficiency improvements to their homes, with the costs repaid through fuel bill savings.

Officials had hoped to get the Energy Bill through parliament before the recess, then launch a consultation on the implementation of the green deal in the autumn.

Campaigners urged the government to use the delay to rethink elements of the bill.

WWF-UK said the government must ‘correct inadequacies within the green deal that will cause the UK to fail to meet its emissions targets under the Climate Change Act’.

It released analysis which it claimed shows the government risks missing its climate change targets because of its energy efficiency policy.

Friends of the Earth said the delay was a chance to look again at proposed rules governing the energy efficiency of private rented sector properties.

As it currently stands, the bill would ban private landlords from letting properties that are rated below E for energy efficiency from 2018.

Campaigners want the date brought forward to 2016, and loopholes closed that they say could make it hard for local authorities to enforce the ban.

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