Friends of the Earth has welcomed Energy Efficiency Certificates as a long-overdue incentive for tackling the UK’s rising climate emissions
The new certificates will form part of the Home Information Pack and provide a clear indication to buyers on the energy efficiency of a property – with ratings much like the energy efficiency labels provided on electrical goods.
Home owners will be able to improve their energy efficiency rating by improving their insulation, for example by installing double glazing, fitting loft insulation or investing in a condensing boiler.
But Friends of the Earth adds that the government must also introduce other steps to take action on tackling emissions from other sectors – rather than relying on individuals to reduce their personal energy use.
Friends of the Earth Climate Campaigner
Germana Canzi, climate campaigner for Friends of the Earth, says: “Energy efficiency certificates will provide really useful information for house buyers and should provide a long-term incentive to taking action to save energy in the home.
Poor insulation can mean families are spending hundreds of pounds heating the atmosphere – and contributing to climate change.
“It is good that the government has finally grasped the nettle on this issue but they must now go further and introduce a mandatory code to make new homes carbon zero.
We need to reduce our emissions across all sectors, as we are calling for with The Big Ask campaign, if we are to make real progress on tackling climate change.”
Emissions from residential properties account for around 30% of UK emissions of climate change gases but this could be drastically reduced through a combination of energy efficiency measures and reliance on greener energy supplies.
Building to high energy efficiency standards could make new build properties carbon neutral (ie with no carbon emissions from their operations) or even net exporters of energy if micro-generation is included in the build.
Friends of the Earth wants to see a new mandatory code introduced for the building trade to ensure all new homes are carbon zero.
According to experts, loft insulation can cut your emissions by roughly a tonne of carbon dioxide while saving up to 200 off your heating bill.
Friends of the Earth wants to see similar steps to cut emissions implemented by other government departments and is calling for a new law to commit the government to cuts of 3% year-on-year.