London lagging behind on insulation
Households in London are the worst in Britain for installing insulation and lagging, new figures have revealed.
The findings were published in a report by the Energy Saving Trust last week showing for the first time what percentage of homes have loft and cavity wall insulation installed under the government's Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (CERT) scheme.
Broken down by local authority and parliamentary constituency area between CERT's launch in April 2008 to 2010, the report makes poor reading for the capital with Westminster (0.2%), Kensington and Chelsea, Tower Hamlets (0.5%), Hammersmith and Fulham, and Southwark (0.7%) propping up the table.
In stark contrast, authorities in the north - and primarily western - areas of the UK have seen a much greater rate of insulation installed in properties.
Almost a quarter (22.5%) of homes in Kirklees, Yorkshire, have put lagging in place. The Isle of Anglesey (18%), Wales' Carmarthenshire (14.6%) and Lancashire's Wyre (13.4%) and South Ribble (13.3%) take up the remaining top five places.
Commenting on the figures, energy and climate change secretary Chris Huhne, mooted that the results may not be as black and white as first perceived.
"This is the first time that local data on insulation is published and it lifts the lid on which parts of Britain have been insulated over the past two years," he said.
"This [report] shows that hundreds of thousands of homes across Britain are already benefitting from saving energy and money as a result of better insulation. But the figures also reveal that some areas are doing better than others, partly because some homes are more difficult and expensive to insulate."
Mr Huhne has already extended the CERT scheme, which requires energy companies to actively promote energy-saving methods to their customers, by a year to 2012. He went on to claim that during that time, government energy reviews would take account of these variations.
"I'm reforming the energy efficiency regime so that more homes benefit in the future - especially those that live in properties that are harder to insulate," he added.
"I make no apologies for turning up the heat on energy companies, demanding that they work harder to make more homes warmer and cheaper to run."