Tag Archives: green deal

Ed Davey writes… Lower energy bills – with good deal for the fuel poor, green energy and the green deal

Energy-bills-006Energy bills are a hot political topic. Since 2005, energy bills have almost doubled at a time when many people’s incomes have barely risen. The cause of these rises has been almost entirely rising wholesale gas prices on international markets. Yet despite that and even though the cost of government policies only represents 9% on the average bill, it is right the Government has closely scrutinised our policy costs, and found a way to reduce them, to deliver an average saving of £50.

The fact we have done so whilst protecting …

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Don Foster MP writes… Housing at the heart of the Budget

House building fell dramatically following the financial crisis and hasn’t yet fully recovered. Last year 118,900 new homes were built in England. But with the number of households predicted to grow by 232,000 a year for the next 20 years and thousands currently unable to get onto the housing ladder, we need to build more than double that each year to keep up with demand, but we also need to tackle the sluggish housing market. That’s why housing was at the heart of the Budget yesterday, with more help for first time buyers and more money for affordable homes.

The …

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Michael Moore MP’s Westminster Notes

Every week, Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Scotland, Michael Moore MP, writes a column for newspapers in his Borders Constituency. Here is the latest edition. 

Green Deal

Despite the fact that we are now well into March, it seems that there is no let up in the cold snowy weather and I know that at this time energy bills remain a major concern to my constituents. To help people reduce these bills and cut down their energy use, the Government has taken action and introduced a scheme called the Green Deal. This enables people to improve the energy efficiency of their …

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Opinion: Rational energy policy must be central to 2015 manifesto

The alarm raised by the Chief Executive of Ofgem earlier this week over a looming energy ‘near crisis’ will not have come as a shock to most people. This is not the first time we have heard how our islands will struggle to support increasing energy demands in a carbon constrained world.

However, the major insight that Ofgem has provided relates to timing. Ofgem’s analysis points very clearly to 2015 as being the critical year when our reliance on imported gas could lead to a major spike in bills.

Lest we forget, 2015 is also the year of the next general election. …

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Michael Moore MP’s Westminster Notes

Every week, Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Scotland, Michael Moore MP, writes a column for newspapers in his Borders Constituency. Here is the latest edition. 

Green Deal

In my constituency I know that energy prices are a key concern for local people. It has been one of the UK Government’s top priorities to help tackle this issue by improving the energy efficiency of people’s homes, reducing the confusing number of tariffs available and making it easier for people to switch. The Green Deal, launched last week, will help with the first part by enabling people to insulate their homes or install …

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Ed Davey MP writes… The Green Deal goes live

Today marks a very significant achievement of our party in Government. The Green Deal is being launched.

After two and half years of toil the pledge in our manifesto to, “offer a home energy improvement package … paid for by the savings from lower energy bills” has become reality.

Chris Huhne started the ball rolling way back in 2010 and Nick Clegg and I are visiting a college in Sheffield today to mark the opening of a brand new market in home energy efficiency and meet trainees in home insulation.

Millions of homes do not have full double-glazing. More than half do not …

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Ed Davey writes: How we can tackle rising energy bills

Energy-bills-006As we enter the first cold snap of the year there will inevitably be a focus on the rising cost of energy – particularly after there have been inflation busting increases in gas and electricity tariffs of 6-10% over the past few months.

No country can stop the main cause of this – rising and high world prices for oil and gas. Yet we must do everything we can, to help people and firms struggling with these bills, especially the most vulnerable. And that’s why helping with energy bills has been and will be one of my top priorities.

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Conference news snippets: economy, mansion tax, Dilnot reforms, business bank and Green Deal

In the key economy debate this morning, conference has backed the party’s approach to tackling the deficit:

Earlier in the day, Clegg was repeating his calls for a mansion tax in some form:

Our focus does remain on very high value property for the simple reason that I think most people in this country just don’t understand why people who have very high value properties just don’t pay their fair share, in the way that everybody does.

Danny Alexander has been calling for speedier action to implement social care reforms:

Danny Alexander will warn his Conservative colleagues on Monday not to delay plans to reform social care for the elderly and state pensions, amid Treasury fears that the changes would cost too much.

The Treasury chief secretary plans to use a question-and-answer session at the Liberal Democrat conference in Brighton to insist that the government goes ahead with both the Dilnot reforms and a single-tier state pension, according to officials.

Meanwhile, Vince Cable is winning out in the arguments with the Treasury over creating a new business bank:

Vince Cable reveals £1bn backing for business bank to help small firms…
In what Liberal Democrats are hailing as one of the major announcements of their conference, the business secretary will say that the new bank could leverage up to £10bn to help businesses struggling to find funds from high-street banks…

The Lib Dems say they have had to fight hard to persuade the chancellor to sign up to the bank, which will be funded from “underspends” by Whitehall departments. These are the funds that remain unspent by departments, which are then clawed back by the Treasury.

And here is Ed Davey and colleagues explaining the Green Deal:

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LibLink: Christine Jardine – Balance of Scottish power

Until the Summer, Christine Jardine was deep at the heart of Government as a special adviser on Scottish media based in Downing Street. She’s now returned to Scotland and full time Liberal Democrat politics.

This week, in the Scotsman, she argued that over reliance on land based wind farms can hurt the communities where they are based and predominantly benefits the landowners who pocket the subsidy and don’t pass it on to local people. She argued that more attention should be given to offshore and tidal projects, like the one Scottish Secretary Mike Moore was so enthusiastic about a few …

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Opinion: Atlas Wussed

Capitalism is in crisis, or so the enthusiastic chaps of the Occupy movement would have us believe. I find doing so somewhat difficult, as I work in central London, and am positively surrounded by capitalists with flashy cars, sharp suits and a taste for champagne. If this is a crisis, it’s difficult to see how it differs from Capitalism Triumphant.

However, the truth is that the classic right-wing Atlas Shrugged mode of capitalism is in crisis. The Government has cut corporation tax, is cutting back regulation and has just lowered the 50p income tax rate. This is the …

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Nick Clegg’s e-mail to party members: The myth: green versus growth

Nick Clegg has been promoting his new deal with the six biggest energy companies which will mean that every consumer will receive a statement every year telling them if they’d be better off on a different tariff and how to change things. It’s part of what seems to be a strategy to debunk the idea put about by George Osborne and the Tory right that you can’t be green and have a growing economy at the same time. It makes sense that if we use our resources carefully, costs come down and that benefits everybody, business, consumer and the environment. …

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Andrew Stunell MP writes… The Building Regulations: Taking the next step towards zero carbon homes

As some of you may know from my previous postings, one of my responsibilities in Government is the Building Regulations. So far, so dull, right? On the face of it, you might be forgiven for thinking so, but the building regulations offer a number of key tools and levers to tackle the carbon emissions produced from our buildings. Yesterday, I announced a Government Consultation on the latest proposals for upgrading the building regulations, and they contain a number of key proposals to significantly improve the sustainability of our built environment.

The upgrading of the building regulations

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WATCH: Chris Huhne – Save Money, Stay Warm, Go Green

Via YouTube here is Chris Huhne on the action he is taking over energy prices:

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Chris Huhne MP writes: Check, switch, insulate to save

No government can control volatile world energy prices. But we can still help people get their energy bills down. So today I am bringing together industry, consumer groups and the regulator Ofgem for an energy summit that will focus on getting people the help they need to reduce their bills in time for this winter.

As Liberal Democrats we have long argued that in the long run the only way to reduce bills is to improve energy saving in our homes, and to invest in more energy generation at home to end our reliance on imported fossil fuels. But there …

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Opinion: The environment starts at home

When I was selected as PPC for Hackney South and Shoreditch ahead of the last General Election, I promised to move into the constituency. Since I believe passionately in the environment, I chose to buy a Victorian solid-brick house in Hackney and with the aim of making it into an ecohouse. Solid brick properties are the so-called “Hard to treat houses”, and exactly the focus of the Coalition Government’s Green Deal.

Prior to the renovation, my house was an environmental disaster zone. In the winter it was cold no matter how high the heating was set, as all the heat …

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Huhne and Clegg launch government’s Carbon Plan

Yesterday Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne launched the Government’s Carbon Plan, setting out in draft form the steps the government will take to cut carbon emissions. The plan is now going out to consultation, with the final version due in the Autumn.

There are three priority areas in the plan for change in the way we do things: electricity generation, heating of homes and workplaces and transportation. The plan also commits the government to working for tough international agreements on tackling climate change.

Reflecting Chris Huhne’s eagerness to see environmental action as being good for the economy as well as the environment, the plan was accompanied by a scheme to train at least 1,000 Green Deal apprentices. That would both help implement environmental improvements and provide people with the skills to get jobs.

Nick Clegg said at the launch that,

Nick CleggWe want to be the greenest government ever. We will reshape the economy, change the way we power our transport, heat our homes, and generate our electricity. We must put the development of the green economy at the centre of our ambitions to rebalance the economy.

The Green Deal is about the future – and it is important we ensure that future generations have the skills they need to take advantage of the opportunities of the green economy. These apprenticeships are a perfect example of how government and business can work together towards a low carbon future.

There is a noticeable difference between the comprehensive environmental action in the climate change plan (coming from a Liberal Democrat led department) and the government’s sustainability policies (coming from the Conservative-led Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs).

Key proposals in the plan include:

  • Legislating to create a floor in the carbon price by April 2011
  • Awarding the contract for the first UK Carbon Capture and Storage demonstration by end of this year
  • Getting the Green Investment Bank operational by September 2012
  • Reducing central government’s emissions by 10% in twelve months to May 2011

Nick Clegg talked about the plan on a visit to B & Q, one of the firms which has been at the forefront of building environmental considerations into its work. Here’s a short video from his visit:

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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJeffrey Kaufman 30th Jul - 11:40am
    Exactly my thoughts
  • User AvatarMalcolm Todd 30th Jul - 11:38am
    Aargh, sorry - misspelled your name again, Matthew! For the nineteen million, two hundred and seventy-seventh time, can we please have a preview/edit function for...
  • User AvatarMalcolm Todd 30th Jul - 11:36am
    Matthew Huntback "So when you write “the Lib Dems” here, do you actually mean “the Leader of the Liberal Democrats and other official spokespeople” rather...
  • User AvatarJoe Bailey 30th Jul - 11:35am
    It is being reported that the kidnap/murder of the three Israeli teenagers was not the work of Hamas, and that Israeli intelligence was aware of...
  • User AvatarDavid Allen 30th Jul - 11:26am
    Sorry - I misread David Wright's post, which I wrongly took to be listing all political donations above £2000.
  • User AvatarMalcolm Todd 30th Jul - 11:24am
    If you do want to use numbers to assess the relative power of the EU and national governments, incidentally, there is a much more meaningful...