Spending cuts fall on DECC

George OsborneChancellor George Osborne has announced œ70m in cuts to the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) as part of departmental efforts to reduce Government spending.

The amount of money being taken from a number of Government departments totals œ3bn and is part of the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s efforts to bring down public debt. This figure has been reached following an in-year budget review process that has identified ?underspends and efficiencies’ in Whitehall departments outside of protected areas like the NHS, schools and aid.

According to a spokesperson from DECC contacted by Roofzine, œ20m of the cuts to its budget will be from ?arms length body underspends’, suggesting that this will not affect current policies which have failed to spend their entire budget.

Around œ40m of the œ70m reduction in spending is reportedly to come from Government energy efficiency subsidies as DECC reviews “the long-term framework for making homes more energy efficient.” When pressed, DECC failed to clarify what form this review would take, or which policies would be affected, but instead claimed that the œ40m amount represents less than 20% of the overall budget for household energy efficiency measures that was allocated in 2015/16 (œ220m).

While the cuts to DECC’s spending will no doubt be met with criticism from the energy efficiency sector, the review of its policies has already been welcomed by some. In a statement released in response to the Government’s announcement, the Association for the Conservation of Energy (ACE) said: “ACE has long called for a more long-term, robust framework that will enable the market for energy efficiency to develop sustainably, and now is the perfect opportunity for DECC to develop this.”

In May 2015’s issue of RCI, a number of construction industry figures called for changes to be made to DECC’s energy efficiency policy. Ray Horwood, chief executive of the National Federation of Roofing Contractors (NFRC) called for the Conservative Government to “tear up the Green Deal”, while Jonathan Bloom of the Construction Products Association (CPA) said: “Government must address the underperformance of current energy efficiency policies and provide a clear, coherent, long-term strategy.”

No posts to display