Housebuilders accused of ‘cheating’ buyers on energy

CCC says UK will probably miss its 2025 and 2030 carbon-reduction targets

Lord Deben

Lord Deben

Housebuilders ‘should be ashamed’ of their energy efficiency record, according to the chair of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC). Lord Deben said they were ‘cheating’ buyers because many new homes were energy inefficient and cost more to run than they should. He added that the UK will probably miss its carbon-reduction targets for 2025 and 2030 because of slow progress on reducing emissions from buildings and transport.

The CCC’s latest report said lower-cost options – such as home insulation and tree planting – were being ignored in favour of more expensive solutions that would push up costs for homeowners. The end of government incentives for insulation had led to a 95% fall in installations since 2012. CCC chief executive Chris Stark said this was ‘shocking’ and called on the government to produce new policies ‘and stick to them’.

‘The industry should be ashamed of itself that it is still producing homes that are cheating the people they sell to,’ said Lord Deben, former environment minister John Gummer. He called the current situation ‘ridiculous’ because low-energy homes cost very little extra to build than poorer performing alternatives.