Government ‘building back greener’ claims disappointing

Commenting on the launch of the government’s green jobs package, Crispin Truman, chief executive of CPRE, the countryside charity, said:

‘Decarbonising our homes and buildings is essential to preventing runaway climate change. But right now, our leaky housing stock is fueling the climate emergency and disproportionately affecting countryside communities, many of which are suffering from widespread fuel poverty as well as extreme weather events. Today’s announcement shows the government’s claims to be ‘building back greener’ are on shaky foundations.

‘In the face of a colossal opportunity to restart the economy and tackle the climate emergency, the announcement of £1bn is a huge disappointment compared with the £9bn for energy efficiency schemes promised by Boris Johnson in the Conservative general election manifesto at the end of last year. What will kickstart the ‘building back greener’ agenda is much larger investment through a National Retrofit Strategy to tackle the issue of energy efficiency wholesale and head on.

‘New housing must become part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Our analysis of the government’s own energy performance certificate data for large new housing developments shows that nearly one in five (17%) of new developments perform very poorly on energy efficiency grounds. That’s why the government must go further and introduce the Future Homes Standard as soon as possible. Only then can the government start to make claims to be building back greener.’