Responding to 2023 Autumn Statement

Autumn statement leaves people out in the cold and energy efficiency organisations unsupported

News

Posted By:

Fran Tute

Communications Assistant

Responding to today’s Autumn Statement, Cara Jenkinson, Cities Manager at climate solutions charity Ashden, said:

“With just a few days to go till COP28, the Chancellor has once again missed an opportunity to show leadership on climate action. After rolling back on net zero targets last month, there has been a stony silence on energy efficiency – leaving people exposed to cold homes and high bills. The energy efficiency industry once again faces an uncertain future, jeopardising the chance to create decent jobs across the country.

“Although Jeremy Hunt put forward support for green industry in his speech, the elephant in the room once again is energy efficiency – despite it being one of the quickest, easiest and least costly things we could do to improve people’s lives. Why would a Chancellor not do this?

“A long-term investment in energy efficiency now would reduce our exposure to volatile gas prices, cut the cost of expensive upgrades to our energy grid, and improve the mental and physical health of millions of people facing fuel poverty.”

Ashden works with and spotlights organisations working on low carbon solutions that could make significant impacts on the UK’s energy efficiency progress through low carbon heating technology or retrofit if given appropriate backing to upscale. The Housing Associations’ Charitable Trust (HACT) – is originating carbon credits to unlock funds to support UK homes in need of retrofitting, and tepeo’s Zero Emission Boiler is a plug-n-play replacement for existing fossil fuel boilers, that works with a hot water tank to deliver low carbon and low-cost home heating in the UK.

Previous award winners include Kensa which manufacture and install ground source heat pumps in the UK, Carbon Co-op which helps people and communities to make the radical reductions in home carbon emissions, and B4Box which are building a more diverse and inclusive construction industry, skilling up a new generation of retrofitters to make our homes more energy efficient.

Cara Jenkinson continues: “As a nation we have the solutions to massively improved energy efficiency, we just need to back them. If Jeremy Hunt wants to entice future voters, leaving out support for businesses that can keep the British public warm, save them money, and keep our carbon emissions down is not the way to do it. By omitting support for organisations like these in the Autumn Statement, the Chancellor is just leaving ordinary citizens and innovative businesses out in the cold.”

Ashden is part of the Warm this Winter coalition which is demanding the government acts now to help tackle rising energy bills this winter and to ensure energy is affordable for everyone in the future.

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