Energy supplier British Gas is to make 500 staff redundant as it shuts its loft and cavity wall insulation business. The cuts form part of parent company Centrica’s previously-announced plan to shed 6,000 jobs in an attempt to slash its costs and become more efficient. A spokesman said the 500 job losses announced today would be at various locations around the country but about 100 of them would be in Leeds. The affected staff had been working on installing home insulation in order to hit Government energy efficiency targets. However those targets have been scaled back significantly in recent years and British Gas now plans to outsource any further energy efficiency work that is required.
Telegraph 2nd Feb 2016 read more »
British business giants including Sainsbury’s and Dixons Carphone have been handed tens of thousands of pounds of taxpayer cash to install energy-efficient lightbulbs, as part of Government efforts to avert a looming power crunch. The Football Association and Travis Perkins are among other organisations to share in a total of £5 million of Government funding, under a scheme to try to reduce the risk of blackouts in coming winters by cutting electricity demand. Ministers awarded the cash to companies to spend on upgrades such as replacing old fluorescent strip lighting with new efficient LED lamps, if they could show it woul d reduce the strain on the UK power grid during winter weekday evenings. “Instead of spending taxpayers’ money paying Sainsbury’s to change their light bulbs, ministers should be supporting lasting schemes like home insulation that cut emissions and cut household bills.” Lisa Nandy, shadow energy secretary Sainsbury’s alone has been awarded more than £830,000 of the cash to spend on upgrading its lighting, Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) documents show.
Telegraph 1st Feb 2016 read more »
Following news that the Scottish Government is planning to cut funding for climate change action by almost 10%, three cross-party committees of the Scottish Parliament have questioned its plans for improving the energy efficiency of Scotland’s homes. As it stands the Draft Budget is set to reduce overall spending on fuel poverty/energy efficiency in 2016/17 by 13%, compared to the total that the Scottish Government plans to spend during the current financial year. WWF Scotland maintains increasing funding for energy efficiency programmes is one of the clearest ways to better embed climate change in this Budget, whilst also helping to tackle fuel poverty and create jobs. The Scottish Government has previously committed to ’embedding’ climate change in this Budget process On the publication of reports by the Holyrood committees, Lang Banks, director of WWF Scotland said “If the Scottish Government’s to live up to its promise of embedding climate change in this budget, it will need to seriously re-think it’s planned cuts. These Holyrood Committee reports point the way by demonstrating investment in energy efficiency is an important way of cutting climate emissions, creating jobs and helping tackle fuel poverty.”
Blue & Green Tomorrow 2nd Feb 2016 read more »