Government inaction on retrofit leaves housing caught in the Jevons Paradox

chris brown resized

The newly created department of energy security and net zero needs to take urgent action on to make heat pumps a widespread technology or it will fail to bring homes up to the standard needed to meet the UK’s net zero targets, writes Chris Brown

Did somebody simply mishear when advising Jeremy Hunt to announce a target of 15% improvement in energy efficiency in buildings by 2030 in the Autumn Statement in November 2022?

Almost everyone else thinks that the 2030 target for carbon dioxide emissions from homes needs to be closer to a 50% reduction.

The 15% energy efficiency target is number three on the list of the new DESNZ (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero) priorities for 2023 (out of six).

BEIS, the precursor of DESNZ, previously announced that they were setting up an Energy Efficiency Task Force, and DESNZ have recently announced NatWest CEO Alison Rose as co-chair, with Lord Callanan, a minister in DESNZ. This follows the minister being asked every few weeks in Parliament where the Task Force is up to. MPs recognise the urgency, they perhaps aren’t convinced yet that a task force is the answer to the lack of Government action on this critical challenge.

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