What can I talk to my MP about?

On this page you will find a range of issues and solutions relating to fuel poverty that you may choose to discuss with your MP.  We are able to provide further briefings on any of the issues below- contact us if you would like one! It can be useful to send a briefing to your MP  ahead of the meeting, so that they may familiarize themselves with your chosen issue. Also, providing your MP with an A4 side of information can be beneficial to your MP. As they have to know a little about a lot of issues, many MPs are grateful for a summary of an issue that impacts their local constituents.

Tackling fuel poverty can involve:

1) reducing the future prevalence of fuel poverty by raising energy efficiency standards for new builds

2) Reducing current prevalence of fuel poverty by retrofitting existing homes.

 
  A picture taken with a Thermal Imaging camera. The house on the left has had external cladding, highlighting the loss of heat from the house on the right in the absence of sufficient insulation. 

A picture taken with a Thermal Imaging camera. The house on the left has had external cladding, highlighting the loss of heat from the house on the right in the absence of sufficient insulation. 

improving energy efficiency for new builds

Any new dwelling is required to have SAP Calculations (a measure of energy efficiency) carried out, but there are currently no energy performance requirements in the current building regulations. You can discuss the low energy efficiency targets with your MP and ask for an upgrade of building regulations to ensure that all new properties are energy band A or B. Decisions made today will have huge implications for future carbon emissions.

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retrofitting existing homes

Even if building regulations required that all new builds had very high energy efficiency standards, millions of homes around the UK would still be left with an energy rating of D and below. To meet the UK's carbon emission targets (see 'The Climate Change Act of 2008'), this will require retrofitting.

Retrofitting involves the addition of new features to older housing such as better insulation, double or triple glazed windows and blocking drafts.

“ ‘Under the Climate Change Act, we have to achieve at least an 80% reduction ihttps://static1.squarespace.com/static/52ee780fe4b00067fb6280bc/t/5af599371ae6cf4b30ef7ab9/1526044996463/home.jpg?format=300wn the carbon emissions from our homes by 2050. We need to be building homes now that are 2050 ready.”

— Philip Sellwood, Chief Executive, Energy Saving Trust

 
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Sample fact sheet

You can produce a fact sheet for yourself like the one below for Livwepool. Include some of the facts you may wish to use during a meeting with your MP, to highlight how much this issue affects your local area. If you would like a fact sheet similar for your local area, contact us.

Liverpool

Fuel Poverty Nationally

  • The number of households in fuel poverty in England in 2015 was estimated at 2.5 million (approx. 11 % of all English households. National Statistics UK.
  • The Government has announced plans to install solar panels on 800,000 low income households over the next 5 years.

Fuel Poverty in Liverpool

  • 14.4% of Liverpool households are in fuel poverty (29,484 households). Liverpool is ranked 20th out of 326 local authority areas in England (Community Action on Fuel Poverty).
  • In 2011/12, Liverpool recorded 170 excess winter deaths, ranking 10th out of the 326 local authority areas.

What can I ask my MP to do?

Nationally

  • More funding is needed to for the government to meet its manifesto pledge of upgrading all fuel poor homes to Energy Performance Certificate C by 2030. You could ask your MP to ask a question challenging the large gaps in proposed funding and the funding that is required.
  • You can talk to your MP about the urgent need for an upgrade of building regulations to ensure that all new properties are energy band A or B. This will reduce the incidence of fuel poverty in the future and drastically reduce the 40% of UK carbon emissions that come from domestic buildings.
  • Thank your MP for the government's announcement around minimum energy efficiency standards for rented properties. It is great that new new regulations are coming into force. However there are still concerns around the enforcement of the standards and the affordability loophole. You could discuss with your MP options for tightening regulations and ensuring that councils have the power and resources to make sure landlords implement these standards. 
  • You may wish to talk to your MP about the scaling up of energy efficiency regulations over time, to keep on track with the UK's carbon budgets.

Locally

  • You can ask your MP to show support for a new community energy project, or visit an existing project in your local area.
  • Your MP may be willing to work with and support your local council in retrofitting poor quality housing in your area.

If your MP has a particular interest in tackling fuel poverty, then also visit our Community Energy page; community energy can help tackle energy security and reduce energy bills.