In response to the Chancellor’s Spring Budget, Cara Jenkinson, Cities Manager, pointed out that the statement made no mention of either increased support for energy efficiency initiatives or improving the green skills needed among the workforce to bring these about:
“This budget was a terrible wasted opportunity. Mr Hunt referred to four Es in his budget –‘ Enterprise, Employment, Education and Everywhere’ but the two that could have helped all four were missing – ‘Energy Efficiency’.
‘This was a chance for the Chancellor to clearly set out that not only did the UK government recognise that focusing on energy efficiency would support citizens through the energy and cost of living crises, but would show the government is continuing to take action on the climate crisis too.
“Instead, this budget showed a UK government committed to investing £20bn in nuclear and carbon capture. £20bn could retrofit millions of homes and provide the government and society with huge quick wins – tackling the energy, climate and cost of living crises at the same time.
“The chancellor’s thinking needs a rapid upgrade – just like 19 million homes in the UK that need retrofitting. By laying out measures to boost retrofit demand and creating a generation of skilled retrofit workers, he could have not only generated savings for struggling households, but also given businesses the confidence needed to generate over 200,000 new energy efficiency jobs. A missed opportunity, that UK households, workers and businesses will keenly feel in years to come.”