Thursday, 7 May 2009

Councils accuse power giants of 'free energy-saving lightbulbs dodge'

Power firms have been accused of handing out energy-saving lightbulbs to dodge their obligation to help families cut carbon emissions.

Local councils say the free distribution is part of an 'outrageous' attempt by the businesses to shirk their responsibility to install more meaningful energy saving measures in homes.

They claim the businesses are effectively paying lip service to energy reduction targets by taking the cheap option of dishing out millions of the bulbs.The Local Government Association says, instead, the industry should be funding a programme of mass home insulation, double-glazing and the installation of efficient boilers. Under the Government's

Carbon Emissions Reduction Target, suppliers are set objectives to cut home carbon emissions.

However, the LGA says these targets are too low. Consequently, firms are able to meet their commitment mainly by sending homeowners energy saving light bulbs, which save just £3 of power a year each.

The LGA wants the Government to toughen targets so energy firms have to insulate more lofts and walls.

It says this could help 1.4million households save £220 of power a year each.

Suppliers are expected to give out an astonishing 280million lightbulbs - 11 for every household - by 2011.

Whereas these bulbs will largely be manufactured abroad, the LGA says insulating more homes would help create 4,000 UK jobs, which would be ideal for those in the struggling construction industry.
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