Climate Action

Labour promises £2.3 billion to upgrade draughty UK homes

The UK’s main opposition political party is pledging to dramatically increase investment in energy efficiency if it gets into power.

  • 01 May 2018
  • Adam Wentworth

The UK’s main opposition political party is pledging to dramatically increase investment in energy efficiency if it gets into power.

The Labour Party announced proposals yesterday to invest £2.3 billion ($3.1 billion) in new insulation schemes across the UK to reduce energy bills and carbon emissions.

Labour claims their new policy will save four million households at least £270 a year on the cost of energy. Its plan will target low-income homeowners and rented properties with a range of schemes, including grants, zero-interest loans, and funding the necessary upgrades for social housing.

The new policy is partly in response to the government’s own proposals, released last month, to focus energy efficiency measures solely on those on lower incomes.

Labour is also hoping to tackle the issue of fuel poverty in the UK, estimated to impact 1 in 10 households. The UK is one of the few countries to actively measure fuel poverty, defined as households which spend at least 10 percent of their income on energy.

Rebecca Long-Bailey MP, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, said: “Our ambitious insulation plan will see the next Labour government take real action against fuel poverty, making homes cheaper to heat, improving people’s health by improving our housing, creating new jobs and reducing carbon emissions.

The party’s manifesto for the 2017 election also contained ambitious policies on energy and climate change, such as ensuring 60 percent of energy is renewable, or zero-carbon by 2030. The party also wants to take away power from larger energy companies to provide more choice to consumers.

“This is part of our plan to fix our broken energy system by capping energy bills and radically reform our broken energy market. By creating publicly owned, locally accountable energy companies and cooperatives to rival existing private energy suppliers this will make a real difference to people’s lives,” she added.

 

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