UK housing scores poorly in European efficiency survey

The UK has one of the most energy inefficient housing stocks in Europe, according to the findings of a new survey.

The ‘Cold Man of Europe’ research, conducted by the Association for the Conservation of Energy across 16 European countries, found that, of the 26 million households in the UK, 21 million had a “poor” level of energy efficiency (Band D, E, F and G on an Energy Performance Certificate). The average energy efficiency of a UK home is Band D, which is not high enough to protect households from fuel poverty.

A survey of the proportion of households living in a dwelling with a leaking roof, damp walls, floors or foundation, or rot in window frames or floor saw the UK rank 12th out of 16 countries, with 15.9% reporting poor conditions. The study also examined fabric U-values in UK homes, and found that for the 11 countries which data was available for, the UK ranked 7th, 8th, 10th and 11th for the U-values of walls, roof, floor and windows respectively.

To conclude, the report makes a number of recommendations, including the need for the UK Government to “…designate home energy efficiency as an infrastructure priority and use infrastructure funds to deliver the stable, long-term investment needed to implement a local authority led infrastructure programme to upgrade all UK homes to at least Band C on an Energy Performance Certificate.”

The full report can be read here.