Energy Efficiency Needs To Be First And Second Priority

The Carbon Trust report that firms' poor energy efficiency is putting Britain’s emission targets at risk; hence energy efficiency should be the first and second priority for organisations!

The Trust’s new report concludes that increased investment in the energy efficiency of non-domestic properties is needed to reduce the carbon footprint of commercial buildings by a third.

Although focussing on the UK the report echoes the situation in many other countries.

If the UK is to meet its legally binding emissions targets non-domestic buildings have to improve their current average E grade energy efficiency rating up to a C grade by 2020, and then to an A grade by 2050.

The report argues that a programme of energy efficiency improvements for commercial and public buildings offers one of the most cost-effective means of cutting carbon emissions.

The report also reveals that a national energy efficiency programme could reduce the carbon footprint of non-domestic buildings by over a third by 2020, bringing savings to the UK economy of £4bn.

Stuart Farmer, head of buildings strategy at the Carbon Trust stated:

"Commercial and public buildings offer the UK a big-bang for its carbon reduction buck. But it won't just happen on its own; energy efficiency needs to be the first and second priority."

The UK government is currently rolling out Display Energy Certificates and Energy Performance Certificates to all non-domestic buildings; this should be completed by 2015 and is designed to provide transparency of energy performance. There are also new rules being introduced that will require all new non-domestic buildings to meet zero carbon standards by 2018.

The Carbon Trust report doesn’t end with these revelations; it also proposes that a wide range of energy efficiency measures must be implemented in all the 1.8 million non-domestic buildings in the UK within the next 10 years, if the UK's emissions targets are to be met.

CBI (Confederation of British Industry) Director of business environment, Neil Bentley, stated that some government intervention is essential to improve the energy efficiency of commercial buildings.

"Many businesses face major barriers in finding the capital to invest in energy efficient measures such as energy management systems, efficient lighting and heating systems," he said. "The government needs to work closely with business to provide the right incentives to help overcome the upfront costs."

Tuesday 22nd December 2009

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