Spring Statement 2019: Business energy efficiency, zero carbon travel and a Future Homes Standard
The Chancellor of the Exchequer’s Spring Statement yesterday (13 March) built on commitments made in the Budget 2018 to accelerate the shift to a clean economy. Here’s what the Chancellor had to say on energy efficiency and low carbon:
- To help smaller businesses reduce their energy bills and carbon emissions, the government is launching a call for evidence on a Business energy efficiency scheme to explore how it can support investment in energy efficiency measures
- To help meet climate targets, the government will advance the decarbonisation of gas supplies by increasing the proportion of green gas in the grid, helping to reduce dependence on burning natural gas in homes and businesses.
- To help ensure consumer energy bills are low and homes are better for the environment, the government will introduce a Future Homes Standard by 2025, so that new build homes are future-proofed with low carbon heating and world-leading levels of energy efficiency.
- To give people the option to travel ‘zero carbon’, the government will launch a call for evidence on Offsetting Transport Emissions to explore consumer understanding of the emissions from their journeys and their options to offset them. This will also look into whether travel providers should be required to offer carbon offsets to their customers.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) also announced its response to last year’s call for evidence on ‘‘Helping Businesses to Improve the Way They Use Energy’. The response includes plans to consult on the future trajectory for tightening energy efficiency standards in the rented sector in Spring 2019, and to consult on Part L of the Building Regulations later in 2019.
It also announced the launch of a £6m ‘Boosting Access for SMEs to Energy Efficiency’ competition – now open for applications. This competition will fund the development of new business models that aggregate and scale up the delivery of small-scale energy efficiency building projects in the commercial and industrial sectors.