A team of researchers from the EVALUATE and COMBI projects, both based in CURE, recently responded to a call for evidence on ‘domestic energy efficiency’, issued by the Westminster Sustainable Business Forum and Policy Connect. The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) – which is the only remaining energy efficiency policy in England – is due to end in March 2017. After this, the current aim is for it to be reformed but as yet there are no concrete details on its successor, and so now is a good time to input into future policy design.
The call covered a number of issues around energy efficiency policy, including: the ‘drivers’ of energy efficiency demand amongst households; how energy efficiency policies can reconcile the goals of reducing carbon emission whilst also tackling fuel poverty; how low-income or vulnerable households can be best targeted; and the ‘best’ ways of funding efficiency measures.
The EVALUATE and COMBI teams provided detailed responses to several of the questions in the call. Some of our major suggestions included:
- The importance of ensuring future energy efficiency policies are funded through a fair mechanism. The current form of levy placed on energy bills disproportionately impacts the poorest households.
- The need for better quality advice and training for householders who receive energy efficiency measures retrofits. There is scope for ‘community’ based approaches here that foster and work with trusted local networks.
- The need for stronger regulation and minimum-standards of energy efficiency in the private-rented sector.
If you’re interested in finding out more, much more detail is contained in our full submission, available here: CURE_Call for evidence