This House of Lords Library Briefing provides background information on the Domestic Premises (Energy Performance) Bill [HL], ahead of its second reading in the House of Lords on 7 February 2020.
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The Domestic Premises (Energy Performance) Bill [HL] is a private member’s bill introduced in the House of Lords on 8 January 2020 by Lord Foster of Bath (Liberal Democrat).
The bill would put an existing fuel poverty target into primary legislation. Currently, the Fuel Poverty (England) Regulations 2014 require the Government to improve the energy efficiency of homes for people living in fuel poverty. The properties in which they live must have a minimum energy performance certificate (EPC) band C rating by the end of 2030. This date could be changed through secondary legislation. The bill would require in primary legislation the secretary of state publish and implement a strategy to deliver on this specific 2030 target.
The bill would also make it a legal requirement for the Government to meet a further target: that as many homes as possible are improved to EPC band C by 2035. This target is not currently set out in legislation.
Other provisions include: enabling the secretary of state to require mortgage lenders to provide information on the energy performance of properties in their portfolio; and new requirements concerning the energy efficiency of new heating systems installed in existing properties.
Lord Foster has argued this bill would better enable the Government to meet both its existing fuel poverty target and its target for reducing the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
In July 2019, the Conservative Government launched a consultation on proposals for updating its current fuel poverty strategy. The consultation ended on 16 September 2019. The Government has yet to publish its response to this consultation.