Everyone should be able to heat their home and keep themselves and their family warm. That’s why we are absolutely committed to tackling fuel poverty.
In government we have taken action, backed up by significant investment, to improve energy efficiency, keeping homes warm and bills down. Latest figures show that 97,000 households in Scotland moved out of fuel poverty in 2015.
But, faced with high fuel bills, we know we have much more to do to eradicate fuel poverty. Here are just some ways we’re working to ensure everyone has a warm home.
1. Since 2008 over one million energy efficiency measures have been installed in almost one million households across Scotland. The proportion of homes with the three highest energy efficiency ratings has also increased by 74 per cent since 2010.
2. Over the next four years half a billion pounds will be available to tackle fuel poverty and improve energy efficiency. By the end of 2021 we will have committed £1 billion to making homes and buildings warmer and cheaper to heat.
3. We will bring forward a Warm Homes Bill to set a new statutory fuel poverty target. Following an independent review of the definition of fuel poverty, we have published a consultation on new targets and timescales, which will form part of a new long-term strategy for resolving fuel poverty.
4. A landmark Scottish Energy Efficiency Programme will begin to be rolled out from 2018. The scheme will make energy efficiency a national infrastructure priority and will aims to provide more affordable energy for consumers.
5. We will establish a publicly-owned, not-for-profit energy company to deliver energy to consumers at as low a cost as possible.
6. We will use new powers to maintain Winter Fuel Payments for Scotland’s pensioners. And we’ll ensure early payment to the almost 80,000 pensioners who live ‘off-grid’, so they can take advantage of lower prices.
7. We’ll extend the eligibility for the Winter Fuel Payment to families with children in receipt of the highest care component of Disability Living Allowance.
8. In 2018, we will begin the roll-out of a Family Financial Health Check service for people on low incomes. This will help people make the most of their money and secure the best energy tariffs.
9. We will introduce new energy efficiency standards for private rented sector properties and seek the views of owner-occupiers on improving the energy efficiency of their homes.
10. We will publish a new Energy Strategy by the end of 2017. The strategy will set out how we will deliver reliable energy supplies at an affordable price for consumers.