Assembly calls for action to cut fuel bills for 1.2 million homes

05 March 2014

The London Assembly today called on Mayor Boris Johnson to press Whitehall to reverse cuts to programmes designed to reduce energy consumption in the capital.

A motion agreed[1] at a today’s Assembly meeting urges the Mayor to lobby the government to rethink reductions to the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) and a two year extension to the time limit for energy companies to fulfil the requirements. The Mayor should also lobby ministers to set out a national infrastructure project that will help to cut fuel bills for 1.2 million London homes by 2015.

Jenny Jones AM, who proposed the motion said:

“The Government’s decision to pander to the energy companies means the Mayor will be unable to meet his target of insulating over a million homes in London by next year. That means bigger fuel bills than necessary for thousands of Londoners and a missed opportunity to improve London’s housing stock. The Mayor needs to lobby the Government to reverse these cuts if he’s to avoid another broken promise to Londoners.”

Murad Qureshi AM, who seconded the motion, said:

“The Government’s rash decision to relieve energy companies of their obligations prevents vulnerable people from getting warmer homes next winter and will see jobs lost in the insulation industry, it is short-termism at its worst”

The full text of the motion agreed at today’s meeting reads as follows:

“This Assembly condemns the Government’s decision to extend the length of time energy companies have to carry out Energy Company Obligation (ECO) works by two years, and to cut the target for hard-to-treat measures so that energy companies only have to pay for 100,000 solid wall insulation measures over four years, compared to original targets of 80,000 installed per year. This low national target will leave the Mayor unable to meet his own target of insulating 1.2 million homes in London by next year.

We support the 20 organisations, including the UK Green Building Council, Sustainable Homes, Greenpeace, Age UK and insulation companies, campaigning for these cuts to be reversed and for home insulation to be classed as a national infrastructure project with secure funding and accepted economic outcomes.

This Assembly also supports the Energy Bill Revolution campaign, which promotes a positive alternative to these cuts. We believe the Government should use the revenue from carbon taxes to help make more homes in London energy efficient, and to invest in more appropriate micro-renewable energy generation in the capital.

This Assembly therefore calls on the Mayor of London to:

· Lobby the Government to reverse the cuts to ECO, and set out a national infrastructure project that will help him retrofit 1.2 million homes in London by 2015

· Give public backing to the Energy Bill Revolution campaign”

Notes to editors

1. The motion was agreed 16 to 5.

2. Watch the webcast.

3. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.

For media enquiries, please contact Kiran Dhaliwal on 020 7983 4504. For out of hours media enquiries, call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the London Assembly duty press officer. Non-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit on 020 7983 4100.