Energy saving remains top of the political agenda as pressure mounts on the Government to cut bills and carbon footprint.
Manufacturers, business organisations and consumer groups in the past few days have all called for action on energy bills while the flagship Green Deal and ECO energy-saving programmes stutter along.
The calls for action echo our long campaign for decisive national action on energy that promotes wholesale, effective measures to cut bills, cut energy and water consumption and cut carbon emissions.
In this context, the Government’s latest figures, published on Friday, show that in the first year of the Green Deal, only 746 plans were completed.
The Government figures reveal that 1,721 households had Green Deal plans in progress and 145,110 Green Deal assessments had been carried out by the end of January, up by 15,268 on December. But the number of Green Deal plans fulfilled was just 0.5% of the assessments total.
Provisional figures show 528,886 measures were installed under ECO (Energy Company Obligation) up to the end of December, with 66,480 installed in December.
The Government has just announced cash incentives to promote take-up of the Green Deal and the UK Green Building Council says the figures should be a wake-up call.
The detail of the fulsome statistical release also highlight the limited nature of the schemes in tackling with urgency our energy consumption. A third of the measures last year were for cavity wall insulation while 32% were boiler upgrades, 25% for loft insulation and all solid wall insulation types accounted for 5%.
The energy savings and payback period on these types of energy efficiencies has been called into question in the past week in a Guardian report, which makes a reappraisal of energy policy urgent and required.
Proven energy solutions
Missing from the figures are what we consider are measures that provide rapid payback, then go on cutting energy bills year after year – low-energy lighting in the form of LEDs and water-saving solutions like eco showers, eco taps and tap aerators.
These solutions have been proven in business and domestic environments to reduce energy costs substantially from day one. The benefits for those on water meters are measurable in terms of cutting bills and savings rise further as people use less energy to heat their water.
The current energy-saving measures shockingly do not include LED lighting and there is scant active support for water-efficient solutions. This needs to be addressed by Government as a priority.
At SaveMoneyCutCarbon, we work with the widest range of customers in businesses large and small, and the domestic consumer. The energy saving and water saving solutions we provide have measurable, significant and sustainable results – cut bills, cut consumption and cut carbon.
The time for radical national action is now. In particular, UK business is suffering and is demanding government help. According to a Financial Times report today, half of the 300 companies in a survey by manufacturers organisation EEF say that a government commitment to keep energy costs at, or below, the EU average would be the biggest single factor encouraging them to expand manufacturing in the UK.
The FT report quotes Andrew Colton, managing director of R Wilson, a chrome and bronze plating specialist in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, saying his last quotation from an energy supplier “offered anything from a 13% increase to a 42% increase in current costs”.
While the EEF’s Budget submission focuses on green taxes, the need to constrain energy consumption through effective efficiencies remains a dominant element in energy strategies.
The CBI has also urged the Government to include help on spiralling utilities costs, placing energy at the heart of the upcoming Budget.
At the same time, Which consumer magazine has also added its voice to the need for accurate data on energy saving and water saving solutions. A Daily Telegraph report advises that Which investigations found many energy-saving items, which can be expensive to buy and install, may not be as cost-effective as they claim.
The research covered a range of products and included a shower head – not one that we offer – that, according to Which, does not deliver even enough savings to pay for itself.
That’s exactly why we test every product before we offer it to customers and why we work with the best manufacturers, like hansgrohe. We also measure the effects in the real world. One example is Puma Hotels, where our water-saving solutions – hansgrohe Ecosmart shower heads, eco taps and tap aerators – delivered over £100,000 savings on a £65,000 investment in just eight months.
And in the leisure sector, our Philips LED energy-saving solutions for Fantasy Island amusement park cut lighting bills by 85% while our LED lighting work with Carlson Rezidor hotel group in the UK will save more than £250,000 in the first year.
We know that tested, proven quality products will deliver savings with rapid payback and ongoing consumption cuts for many, many years. This applies equally to households, businesses and all organisations, large and small.
That’s why we are pushing so strongly for urgent Government action to promote, support and underwrite a broader, effective strategy to cut spiralling energy bills, cut energy and water consumption and cut carbon emissions.
Call us on 0845 123 5464 to discuss your energy saving and water saving needs and start cutting your bills now.