Residents call for Wealden MP to back Energy Bill changes

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REPRESENTATIVES from Friends of the Earth presented a petition signed by 160 Wealden District residents to their MP Charles Hendry calling on him to back changes to the Government’s Energy Bill.

They called on Mr Hendry, the Government minister responsible for the bill, to back changes to the Government’s Energy Bill after handing over the petition on June 24 which asked him to tackle climate change, protect tenants from the coldest rented homes and make sure there is a nationwide plan to insulate all homes.

Michael Hodgson, Friends of the Earth supporter and Wealden resident, said: “A truly green Energy Bill would help councils and communities like Wealden get on with things like insulating homes, fitting solar panels and improving public transport so we could all enjoy cheaper fuel bills and greater energy security.”

Green groups, businesses and local constituents are concerned that the Bill is too weak to deliver the energy savings needed to cut rising fuel bills and tackle dangerous climate changing emissions.

In Wealden constituency nearly 5,000 homes are suffering from fuel poverty. Poor insulation means £1 in every £4 spent heating our homes is wasted.

Charles Hendry recently said at a public meeting in Uckfield that he wanted to see a new ‘insulation revolution’ in Wealden, by tackling the problem of unfit homes for people across the District, and to help create local employment. This petition shows that local people share his ambitions and are encouraging him to help deliver a clean green future for Wealden and the planet.

Mr Hendry said: “The Energy Bill is the most important piece of legislation ever introduced to tackle energy efficiency. We are determined that it should bring real benefits to those who live in the least well insulated homes and those who struggle most to pay their bills. We will continue to work with groups like Friends of the Earth to try and make sure it is as comprehensive as possible.”

Quentin Given, Climate Change Campaigner for Friends of the Earth, added: “Local people are asking Charles Hendry to back changes to the Government’s new Energy Bill - to ensure every council does its bit to tackle climate change, protect tenants from dangerously cold homes, and introduce a plan to cut energy waste in the nation’s houses.”