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Energy: Housing

Energy and Climate Change written question – answered on 29th November 2011.

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Photo of Martin Caton Martin Caton Labour, Gower

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change

(1) whether he proposes to issue guidance to local authorities regarding the excuse of their responsibilities under the Home Energy Conservation Act 1995; and whether such guidance will include (a) targets for local authorities regarding increases in home energy efficiency, (b) targets for local authorities to reduce the number of households in fuel poverty and (c) ways in which community groups, local businesses and other local people may be involved in helping to deliver reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases, greater energy efficiency and local green energy;

(2) pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State in his Department, the hon. Member for Bexhill and Battle, of 10 May 2011, Official Report, column 1103, on Second Reading of the Energy Bill [Lords], what steps he (a) has taken and (b) plans to take to breathe new life into the Home Energy Conservation Act 1995;

(3) if, in exercise of the power conferred on him by section 4(2) of the Home Energy Conservation Act 1995, he will issue guidance to local authorities as to what levels of improvements in energy efficiency are to be regarded as significant.

Photo of Gregory Barker Gregory Barker The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change

The Home Energy Conservation Act 1995 (HECA) requires local authorities (LAs) with housing responsibilities to report on action to improve the energy efficiency in their residential accommodation. The Government's proposals for the Green Deal will fundamentally alter the landscape against which LAs will fulfil this requirement.

The Green Deal consultation document was published on 23 November and we aim to have final proposals available early next year. LAs will need to time to consider the Green Deal proposals and what this means for their plans for energy efficiency locally. With this in mind we therefore propose to issue new HECA guidance in spring 2012.

We are currently considering the future scope of guidance under HECA and will develop proposals in partnership with local government in the context of DECC's Memorandum of Understanding with the Local Government Association.

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