Energy Company Obligation
Introduced in 2013, ECO is an obligation on larger energy suppliers to supply fuel poor consumers across Great Britain with energy efficiency and heating measures – with the next phase, ECO4 (2022 to 2026), valued at £1 billion per year. ECO4 will target the poorest performing homes in Bands D, E, F and G and there will be a clear move towards a multiple measure approach. Proposals indicate that there will be a focus on hard-to-treat properties, including those with solid walls. The Solid Wall Minimum Requirement has increased to 22,000 under ECO4.
- From 2020 all privately rented homes in England and Wales must have a minimum EPC rating of band E.
- Under Government proposals, new tenancies will be required to meet a minimum band C from 2025, with the requirement extended to all tenancies in 2028.
- The Government has proposed a requirement for all privately rented non-domestic buildings to a minimum band B by 2030, where cost-effective.
The Welsh Government is in the process of undertaking a review of Part L (Conservation of Fuel and Power) and Part F (Ventilation) of the Building Regulations.
The Welsh Government has its own fuel poverty targets::
- By 2035, no households are estimated to be living in severe or persistent fuel poverty as far as reasonably practicable.
- By 2035, no more than 5% of households are estimated to be living in fuel poverty at any one time as far as reasonably practicable.
- The number of all households “at-risk” of falling into fuel poverty will be more than halved based on the 2018 estimate by 2035.
Warm Homes Programme
The Warm Homes Programme funds energy efficiency improvements to eligible households across Wales. Improvements are delivered via Nest and Arbed. In addition to offering free, impartial advice for all households in Wales, Nest supports the installation of a package of home energy efficiency improvements to eligible households in Wales. The Arbed scheme delivers energy efficiency improvements to targeted areas and Local Authorities support in the delivery of the scheme, contacting those who may be eligible.