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Climate committee pushes for faster insulation rollout

The government needs to ensure 8.3 million additional lofts are insulated in the UK by 2022 in order to meet its carbon emissions targets, according to the latest report from the Committee on Climate Change.

The Committee on Climate Change also recommended 5.7 million cavity walls and two million solid walls would be required to meet government carbon budgets, in its third annual report to Parliament on progress on greenhouse gas targets.

It says the government must outperform the currently carbon reduction targets in order to achieve  the fourth carbon budget timetable, which aims to cut emissions 50 per cent by 2027, from 1990 levels.

“The step change that we have previously highlighted has not yet been achieved,” said Lord Adair Turner, chair of the CCC, an independent body established under the Climate Change Act to advise the government on emissions targets. “Although we can meet the first carbon budget, this is mainly due to the recession. It is crucial that government sets out detailed policies to support power sector decarbonisation and energy efficiency in homes and businesses. The successful implementation of these policies will determine our ability to meet carbon budgets.”

The Committee praised the government’s performance in accelerating the rate at which old inefficient boilers were replaced through the boiler scrappage scheme. However, it pointed out that professional installations of lofts and cavity wall insulation had fallen by 30 per cent in 2010, compare with 2009.

The government has committed to improve the energy efficiency of 14 million homes by 2020 through the Green Deal, in which energy companies or councils will pay for refit work up front, in return for long term repayments from householders energy bills.

Responding to the CCC report, energy and climate change secretary Chris Huhne said the government was determined to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels.

“The coalition’s once-in-a-generation reforms of the electricity market, the Green Deal and the Green Investment Bank show we’re serious about making the long-term structural changes that are vital to cut emissions and keep the lights on.”

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