As set out in the Government’s clean growth strategy, we plan to consult in the spring of next year on an uplift to the energy efficiency requirements for new homes and other buildings where there are safe, practical, cost-effective and affordable opportunities to do so.
I thank the Minister for that response. At a time when the Government are urging more house building and looking at climate change as well, would it not be a good time to change building regulations so that all houses are self-sufficient in electricity? That would have the dual benefit of reducing utility costs and saving the planet.
My hon. Friend is a persistent and effective advocate for renewable energy and for energy self-sufficiency. He is quite right that technology is currently emerging that may well enable domestic self-sufficiency in the future. I would be more than happy to explore the possibilities with him in the spring.
Do the Minister and the rest of the Ministers on the Front Bench not understand that those in local government are so demoralised by a lack of funding that they cannot get their heads round carbon-neutral housing or almost anything else because they are struggling to meet the basic needs? In my own local authority area, we do not even have a youth service any longer.
The hon. Gentleman is doing a disservice to local authorities, which have grasped the raised energy standards for new homes over the past few years, increasing them by 30% and saving all our electors, on average, £200 on their energy bills.