Lesley Rudd, Sustainable Energy Association
Lesley Rudd, Chief Executive of the Sustainable Energy Association, welcomed the Clean Growth Strategy, its ambition to make all homes EPC Band C and the change to boiler regulations, all things the SEA has campaigned for. She called for higher standards for new and existing homes and for affordable homes to be affordable to heat. She stated her belief that the role of sustainable energy will be central to any ambition to create the world’s most innovative economy, new skilled work opportunities, clean secure infrastructure, an attractive business environment and prosperous communities.
Minister for Business and Industry, Richard Harrington MP
Richard Harrington, Minister for Business and Industry, complimented the work of the Sustainable Energy Association and highlighted the high regard with which the organisation is held by the Department (BEIS). He noted the breadth of the organisation’s membership and its constructive approach. The Minister highlighted the change in attitudes towards sustainable energy and stressed that it is now recognised not only as compatible with but also an important part of economic growth.
Lord Deben, Committee on Climate Change
Lord Deben, Chair of the Committee on Climate Change, stressed that if we are to meet the carbon targets that Parliament has signed up to, we need to build homes to much higher standards. He said it was utterly unacceptable to build one million unsuitable homes. We will make the situation worse year on year if we don’t build homes to a proper standard. He emphasised that people should not be forced to pay more for their heating than they need to pay and that the occupation costs of homes should be highlighted – not just the capital cost.
David Amess MP
David Amess, Conservative MP for Southend West, called on all attendees to support the Domestic Energy Efficiency Bill, which he is introducing as a Private Members Bill early in 2018. This Bill commits the government to bring all homes up to EPC Band C by 2035 something which the SEA has been campaigning for. David complimented Ron Bailey, Head of Parliamentary Affairs at the SEA for his campaigning work.
Julien Uhlig, CEO, Arensis
Julien Uhlig, CEO at Arensis, spoke about the importance of Government support for the biomass sector and how these policies had encouraged his company’s investment in the UK. He stressed that the UK has the chance to become a leader in the sustainable energy sector and highlighted the need for industry collaboration, in actively building a sustainable future. Julien stressed that renewable energy and energy efficiency will strengthen the UK industry, create jobs and improve the environment. It’s not a political issue it’s simply common sense. He looks forward to working with the SEA to build a sustainable energy future.
Paul Kearsley, BNP Paribas Personal Finance and closing remarks from Lesley Rudd, SEA
Paul Kearsley, Head of Business Development Home Improvements at BNP Paribas, spoke about the company’s commitment to providing funding for green initiatives. He hoped that BNP Paribas could pave the way for other lenders to enter the sector.