’Focus on the home-owners who are ready to act ...’

CSE responds to government’s call for evidence on building home energy efficiency market

15 January 2018

The government needs to update its perspective of what’s now stopping home owners from improving the energy performance of their homes. And it should prioritise supporting more local initiatives to accelerate market development.

These are the main messages of CSE’s response to the government’s call for evidence on Building a Market for Energy Efficiency, which focuses on the owner-occupier market. 

Building on previous analysis by CSE, Chief Executive Simon Roberts OBE said: “The government’s understanding of the barriers to action is based on surveys which typically include all types of owner-occupiers, rather than just those who are actively considering taking action. As a result the government has a misleading picture of what’s stopping action and how effective different policies might be.

“The government should instead focus on understanding the characteristics and needs of households who are ready and willing to act.  Our analysis of people who have visited green open homes events (potentially the most ready and willing to act) provides a very clear picture of who these people are. And this suggests a very different priority for policy interventions compared with those laid out in the Call for Evidence.”

Alongside our short response to the Call for Evidence (see here), CSE has also provided to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) its analysis of the characteristics of visitors to Bristol Green Doors events over recent years (see Who are the early adopters? and accompanying demographic analysis). The response also reiterated the insights in CSE’s 2017 presentation – Do the next million first – which proposed a policy focus on enabling so-called ‘early adopters’ to act.”

Simon Roberts concluded: “We hope that our response will support the development by BEIS of a more sophisticated conception of this market and how it can develop a better understanding of the home-owners are most likely to be ‘next to act’ (who should therefore be the target of policy). This would drive new policy interventions and prioritise local action to accelerate the market.”

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