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Energy Efficiency

Volume 164: debated on Monday 18 December 1989

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28.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what improvements have been made in energy efficiency in the last 10 years.

32.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what improvements have been made in energy efficiency in the last 10 years.

73.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what improvements have been made in energy efficiency in the last 10 years.

The nation has substantially improved its energy efficiency over the last 10 years. Our energy ratio —the amount of primary energy used to produce each £1,000 of gross domestic product—has improved from 1·24 tonnes of coal equivalent in 1979 to 1·01 tonnes of coal equivalent in 1988; and average reduction in energy intensity of 2 per cent. per year.

45.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what progress is being made with the promotion of energy efficiency in Government Departments.

70.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what progress is being made with the promotion of energy efficiency in Government Departments.

I refer my hon. Friends to the answer I gave to my hon. Friends for Fylde (Mr. Jack) and for Maidstone (Miss Widdecombe) on 13 November 1989 at column 95. The next meeting will take place on 31 January 1990.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will give for each year since 1978 the collective estimated expenditure on energy efficiency measures in the domestic sector consistent with the figure of £73 million given for 1987–88 in paragraph 3·7 of the National Audit Office's "National Energy Efficiency", breaking the figure for each year down into assistance for (a) owner-occupiers, (b) private sector tenants and (c) council tenants.

The main components of £73 million for 1987–88 quoted by the National Audit Office consisted of direct expenditure on domestic energy efficiency measures through the homes insulation scheme and the community insulation programme (the latter also supports training objectives and so cannot be attributed entirely to energy efficiency measures). Expenditure under these schemes is given below for each financial year from 1981–82. A breakdown of the figures in the form requested is not available.

Homes insulation scheme (£ million)Community insulation programme (£ million)
1981–8224·3n/a
1982–8330·0n/a
1983–8425·55·5
1984–8525·38·6
1985–8628·019·4
1986–8726·536·6
1987–8824·845·2
1988–899·9n/a

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what has been the progress since June 1987 of the building research energy conservation support unit in (a) concentrating on the elderly and disadvantaged and (b) private sector housing research and development activities.

Since June 1987 the building research energy conservation unit, working for the Energy Efficiency Office:

  • 1. Has completed 12 demonstration projects to promote more efficient energy use in sheltered accommodation and the refurbishment of older housing.
  • 2. Is currently preparing a number of good practice guides and case studies for low income housing under the best practice programme.
  • 3. Has developed a strategy under the best practice programme designed to achieve large scale improvements in energy efficiency in private sector housing. The results of the first of these initiatives is Wimpey's new "Superspec" home which my right hon. Friend opened earlier this month and which is built to standards considerably beyond those required to meet the 1990 building regulations for energy efficiency.
  • To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will make a statement on the relationship between the provision of information on energy efficiency by the privatised electricity distribution boards and the role of the Energy Efficiency Office.

    Officials of the Energy Efficiency Office (EEO) have already had discussions with officials of the Office Of Electricity Regulation (OFFER) whose role is to supervise the obligations of licensees to promote energy efficiency under the terms of the Electricity Act 1989.I have no doubt that the present constructive co-operation between regional energy efficiency offices and electricity boards will continue. For instance REEOs are members of judging panels of competitions on energy efficiency organised by electricity distribution boards. Electricity boards and the EEO frequently co-operate in the sponsorship of seminars and exhibitions on energy efficiency.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) whether the new scheme of grants towards basic insulation measures announced on 22 November will extend to (a) cavity wall insulation and (b) double glazing;

    (2) whether the new system of grants for house insulation announced on 22 November will involve contributions to the cost by the recipients of grants.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what conclusions the Energy Efficiency Office has reached about questions of productivity of neighbourhood energy action projects under employment training; and if he will place a copy of its conclusions in the Library.

    The most recently available information on productivity was included in the Neighbourhood Energy Action publication "Energy Efficiency and Employment Training—One Year On". I have asked Neighbourhood Energy Action, from whom the report is publicly available, to send a copy to the hon. Member.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what steps the Energy Efficiency Office has taken to persuade the cavity wall trade associations to develop and provide to consumers a common protection package backed by insurance guarantees; and if he will introduce legislation to achieve this objective.

    With the encouragement of the Energy Efficiency Office, the Office of Fair Trading and the National Cavity Insulation Association are discussing the production of a revised code of professional practice; it is expected that this will give a wide range of consumer safeguards additional to current arrangements. I am hopeful that agreement can be reached on a satisfactory code without legislation.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will publish in the Official Report the latest international energy efficiency league table.

    The following table lists IEA member countries in order of energy ratio in 1987, the latest year for which figures are available, measured in tonnes of oil equivalent per $1,000 GDP at 1985 prices.

    Energy ratio
    Japan0·26
    Switzerland0·28
    Italy0·33
    Denmark 0·34
    West Germany0·42
    United Kingdom0·43
    Spain0·43
    Austria0·44·
    United States of America0·44
    Norway0·46
    Australia0·48
    Ireland0·50
    Netherlands0·51
    Sweden0·54
    Belgium0·55
    Greece0·57
    Portugal0·62
    New Zealand0·63
    Canada0·64
    Turkey0·80
    Luxembourg0·85

    Sources: Energy Balances of OECD Countries; OECD Main Economic Indicators.

    These energy ratios are determined by many factors, including climate and industrial structure.

    16.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he has any further proposals to promote the more efficient use of energy.

    The Energy Efficiency Office will continue to promote regularly the adoption of energy efficiency measures through all its programmes.