Scottish Environment minister to make energy-efficiency improvements a national priority

Energy efficiencyReducing energy bills and fighting fuel poverty are central to the Scottish Government’s efforts to tackle climate change in a package of measures covering transport, environment and energy.

Heat accounts for approximately half of Scotland’s emissions and over 55% of energy demand and – in a statement to Parliament – Scottish Environment Minister Aileen McLeod announced that improving the energy efficiency of Scotland’s homes and non-domestic building stock will be designated a National Infrastructure Priority.

Following a visit to a housing energy efficiency project in Dumbiedykes – adjacent to Holyrood – Dr McLeod revealed that Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Programme will be the cornerstone of the National Infrastructure Priority. This new programme will provide an offer of support to all buildings in Scotland – domestic and non-domestic – to help them achieve a good energy efficiency rating over the next 15-20 years.

It will also use new powers – due to be devolved in the Scotland Bill – to determine how supplier obligations in relation to energy efficiency and fuel poverty can be better designed to better suit Scottish circumstances, as well as levering in private sector investment.

McLeod said: “Heating and cooling our homes and businesses costs £2.6 billion a year and accounts for approximately half of Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions. Energy efficiency is clearly key to meeting our ambitious climate change targets which is why action on energy is a key focus as the Scottish Government step up our action on climate change.

“We are already making good progress and since 2008, nearly one in three households have installed energy efficiency measures to benefit from warmer homes and lower energy bills.

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