This month we’re kicking off with the news that the UK Energy Security Bill is set to become law. The Government says new measures to propel the UK’s transition to a cleaner, affordable, home grown energy system will be introduced, in a move that will boost the country’s energy security and protect consumers, it promises.
The legislation aims to help people with rising energy costs and puts into law measures to boost long-term energy independence and security including the British Energy Security Strategy announced earlier this year.
It promises £100 billion of private sector investment by 2030 into new British industries to help diversify UK energy supply.
Among other interesting measures, The Bill will establish a new independent Future System Operator, which will take a whole-system approach to coordinating and planning Great Britain’s energy system, looking across electricity, gas and other emerging markets such as hydrogen and CCUS.
And, it will take back control of powers given to the EU on the energy performance of buildings. The Bill will provide a replacement power to enable the UK government to amend the EU-derived Energy Performance of Buildings regime.
CCC Progress Report: UK making ‘scant progress’ towards Net Zero
EDIE writes that the CCC’s new progress report states there are only “credible” Government plans to deliver around one-third of the emissions reductions needed to meet the Sixth Carbon Budget.
A further 25 per cent of the reductions could be delivered with rapid action outside of policymaking, but the CCC warns that the further reductions “cannot be relied on”.
Crucially for energy efficiency, sectors in which emissions reductions will be lowest and slowest as a result of present policy gaps include buildings and heat.
Summarising the policy gaps in this sector, the report states: “There are no policies for energy efficiency in owner-occupier households which are not fuel poor. But the UK Government has also not done enough to provide a long-term funding settlement for public buildings; nor has it taken strong enough action on boiler phase-out dates, particularly for commercial buildings.”
Kevin Cox, Managing Director, Energys Group comments: “It is essential that we continue the low carbon transition across public and commercial buildings through better energy efficiency.
“The Government has to prioritise this quick win and I hope to see action soon to help – so we can all contribute to healthier, greener buildings.”
Cleaner, safer air for schools – without the windows open!
Moving from energy to indoor air quality, we hope many of you will be aware of our announcement earlier this month of a £3.5million Clean Air Fund for schools. It seems our focus on IAQ is timely. In the last few days, the press has been full of the latest statistics on rising Covid cases set – which look set to hit new record. Many experts are now calling for return of free testing and school air filtration systems.
In a news release, Deepti Gurdasani, a clinical epidemiologist at Queen Mary University of London is quoted as saying: “We clearly need a long-term strategy. It is unsustainable to live with three waves occurring within 6 months, leading to significant impact in terms of long Covid, pressures on the NHS, deaths, and societal disruption.”
This is something we’d agree with at Energys Group. Our own new Clean Air as a Service model offers an easy ‘win-win’ route to safer, cleaner air – and a more sustainable approach to heating-related energy in school buildings. If this strikes a chord, we’d be only too happy to have a conversation.
Energy costs top Covid
And finally, Energy costs have overtaken the recovery from Covid 19 as the top concern for UK businesses, writes the Energyst, according to a new report.
Four in five of every five industrial users say the Government should be doing more to help them navigate the crisis. And with nine out of 10 predicting the cost of energy to their business will increase over the next 12 months, 80 per cent reported that energy is now a major board-level issue.
Crucially, more than half (55 per cent) of the 200 firms surveyed say that measures such as energy efficiency and management would head their investment agenda in the coming twelve months.
Kevin Cox said: “We understand the last few years have been incredibly challenging for UK business. We want to help wherever we can, and we’re pleased to see strong percentages of business minds favouring energy efficiency in terms of their investment agenda.
“To these managers, I say simply; give us a call.”