Departmental Written Questions

Energy and Climate Change written question – answered on 30th March 2010.

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Photo of Stephen O'Brien Stephen O'Brien Shadow Minister (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what methodology his Department used to determine whether answers to questions in the formulation if he will set out with statistical information related as directly as possible to the tabling hon. Member's constituency the effects on that constituency of his Department's policies since 1997 could be provided without incurring disproportionate cost; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Joan Ruddock Joan Ruddock Minister of State (Department of Energy and Climate Change)

The Department of Energy and Climate Change has implemented policies to address greenhouse gas emissions, fuel poverty, the low carbon economy and energy security. The Department does not have readily-available data at the constituency level for the impact of these policies with the exception of Warm Front, for which data have been provided. This practical limitation means that preparing an estimate at the constituency level or a similar level of regional disaggregation would incur disproportionate costs above the £800 limit for answering a parliamentary question.

Warm Front scheme

The Warm Front Scheme is designed to tackle fuel poverty. The scheme provides grants for households on qualifying income and disability related benefits to install a range of insulation and heating measures in their homes. Information is available from eaga, the scheme manager, on a constituency level. During the period 1 June 2000 to 31 January 2010 the Scheme has assisted 2,557 households in the Eddisbury constituency.

Regional greenhouse gas emissions

Climate change mitigation needs to be tackled at both national and local levels. Estimates of carbon dioxide emissions at local authority level are produced annually by AEA on behalf of DECC and are published as national statistics at the following link:

http://decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/statistics/climate_change_gg_emissions/uk_emissions/2007_local/2007_local.aspx

There are practical considerations which mean that emissions data are not calculated at a constituency-level.

Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (CERT)

The CERT is set at a Great Britain-wide level. Given the terms of the legislation, Government have no existing powers to require energy suppliers to report where they have installed measures. However, DECC is working with energy suppliers and the Energy Saving Trust with the aim of being able to report on the number of CERT measures professionally installed at a constituency level in future.

Other policies

A number of DECC's policies operate at the national rather than local level, which means that data at a constituency level is not gathered. For example, national policy statements on energy infrastructure will lead to faster and fairer planning across the country and a diverse low carbon energy mix.

In addition, some policies are not yet fully operational or are too new for their effect to be measured. The Community Energy Savings Programme (CESP) began on 1 September 2009 and there are currently six live CESP schemes, one in Walsall, one in Bristol and four in Birmingham. We expect around 100 schemes nationally over the next three years. Ofgem is due to provide its first statutory CESP progress report to the Secretary of State on 1 May 2010. The feed-in tariff and renewable heat incentive 'clean energy cashback' schemes will begin on April 2010 and April 2011 respectively.

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