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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Greater energy efficiency regulations required in Scotland, says Labour

The Scottish government is being urged to set a higher benchmark for the energy efficiency of private rented homes to help create warmer places to live, tackle fuel poverty, and fights climate change.

Scottish ministers recently consulted on plans to set a minimum standard of energy efficiency in private rented sector housing of Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating D by 2025, but Labour wants all private properties to be brought up to an EPC rating of at least C by 2025.

The party highlighted figures showing that 33% of privately-renting households were in fuel poverty in 2015.

It is important to note that the consultation paper said the government was also seeking views on raising the standard further, and so there is every possibility that landlords north of the border may have to meet even tougher targets for the energy efficiency of their properties moving forward.

Housing spokeswoman Pauline McNeill MSP said: “Unfortunately for many in Scotland, and particularly for those in the private rented sector, a warm home is not a reality.

“There already exist strict standards over the energy efficiency of homes in the social housing sector, yet there is none whatsoever for privately rented homes. It's time to place higher obligations on private landlords to achieve this.

“The Scottish government’s plans to introduce minimum standards on EPC D simply don't go far enough.” 

Calls for tougher standards have been backed by WWF Scotland.

Senior climate and energy policy officer Sarah Beattie-Smith said: “Improving the energy efficiency of Scotland's homes is a win-win.

“It creates healthier places to live, tackles fuel poverty, creates jobs and fights climate change.

“It makes no sense that some private renters are currently forced to waste precious cash and carbon heating the air outside their cold and leaky homes.

“That's why we want the Scottish Government to take action through the forthcoming Climate Change Bill, and by introducing regulations to protect private tenants.”

  • icon

    shelter again?

    wwf--wtyf??

    grenfell happened in attempt to save the planet--complete nonsense

  • icon

    most old properties in UK would need £10s of thousands spent to bring them up to C--also massive insulation can cause mould and damp and consequent health problems--fresh air is actually good for you

  • Colin Lillicrap

    I think it is inevitable that politicians on both sides of the border will seek to improve the energy efficiency of our buildings, but Terry Sullivan makes a good point. The politicians have chosen to used the EPC rating as the benchmark even though it does not account for all energy used in buildings. Furthermore the Recommendation Report that accompanies the EPC is based on a generic list of measures not on specific calculations for the building. It should be seen only as the starting point for making improvements. Landlords will benefit from paying for a thorough survey followed by detailed analysis of the economically feasible improvement measures. Many EPCs were produced for minimum fees and may be based on default values and the building might be wrongly rated. We strongly recommend having any F or G rated building re-surveyed and the EPC rating re-calculated by experienced energy consultants before making any decision about investing in improvement measures.

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