Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Action on Fuel Poverty

The Scottish Government  announced new plans to help people struggling to pay their fuels bills.

A pilot will see 220 rural households offered targeted support to cut their energy bills – while an independent review of how fuel poverty is defined is to take place. To read more click here

Responding to the Scottish Government announcements on fuel poverty, Lori McElroy, Chair of the *Existing Homes Alliance said:

“We welcome the Scottish Government’s commitments to consult on a new statutory fuel poverty eradication target and strategy. However any new fuel poverty goal will remain out of reach unless it is backed up by stronger action and a target to improve the energy efficiency of Scotland’s homes, alongside other actions on income, managing energy and energy prices

“The commitment to put in place minimum energy performance standards in the private rented sector and a phased regulation of other existing buildings will really help improve housing conditions for vulnerable tenants and reduce fuel bills. It is however disappointing that the Scottish Government has chosen to ignore expert recommendations to set a clear target to insulate fuel poor homes to an EPC C standard by 2025 where possible. This lets down those who can least afford to waste money heating the air outside their leaky homes, with those in low energy performing homes still 3.5 times more likely to be in fuel poverty than those in energy efficient homes .”

The Existing Homes Alliance believes that upgrading the vast majority of homes to the recommended EPC C standard by 2025 would be an important milestone towards warm, affordable and low carbon homes and is critical to reducing ill-health and reducing excess winter deaths.

Lori McElroy added:

“We have the technologies and skills we need to do this but just lack a clear goal. Insulating homes to the maximum level possible would help to protect the most vulnerable, save the NHS millions of pounds, reduce fuel bills and create up to 9,000 quality jobs right across Scotland. This approach has widespread support across the Scottish Parliament and is backed by more than 50 business and civic organisations in Scotland.”

*The Exiting  Homes Alliance Scotland is a coalition of housing, environmental, fuel poverty and industry organisations calling for urgent action to transform Scotland's  existing housing stock and make fit for the 21st  century.

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