Guiding principles to ensure alignment with fuel poverty objectives
1. We are committed to ensuring that poor energy efficiency is removed as a driver of fuel poverty. As such, improving the fabric of buildings will be central to how we decarbonise heat.
2. We recognise that heat decarbonisation is essential to address the climate emergency, and that in decarbonising our homes we must not make fuel poverty worse. We commit to delivering measures to help those in fuel poverty to manage their running costs. As such, it is essential that, whenever possible, measures that both promote decarbonisation and lower fuel costs are supported.
3. We will assess our heat in buildings capital delivery programmes for their impact on those households experiencing fuel poverty– both at installation and throughout their lifespan. This assessment should be proportionate to the expected impacts.
4. Where an intervention can lower running costs, fuel poor consumers should be targeted for support as soon as possible, including support for the up-front installation costs of these measures. Factors affecting the ability of consumers experiencing fuel poverty to take up these measures should be considered as part of this process, as should the provision of advice and support to ensure that households in fuel poverty derive the maximum benefit from new measures.
5. We will develop mitigation measures to be deployed across our capital funding programmes where there are demonstrable cost increases on those in or at risk of fuel poverty. Success of these measures should be regularly assessed and, if appropriate, these measures should be adjusted to better meet the needs of these households.
6. In cases when zero emissions heat interventions are assessed as likely to increase energy costs even after mitigation measures are put in place, government supported measures should be focused on consumers who are not at risk of fuel poverty.
7. In some cases, wider change will be needed for decarbonisation measures to become suitable for those in fuel poverty, including areas that are reserved to the UK Government. We will continue to urge the UK Government to take necessary action in reserved areas and will use the research and practical experience gained through our decarbonisation schemes to support us in building appropriate evidence and pushing for systemic improvements.
8. Communications should be presented in formats accessible to a wide range of consumers, taking into account differing circumstances and accessibility needs.