Oil heating industry trade association FPS (Federation of Petroleum Suppliers) welcomes the appointment of Amber Rudd as the new Energy & Climate Change Secretary, and anticipates a period of positive change in home heating and energy policies.
“We look forward to meeting and working with Amber Rudd and her team on important issues relating to the oil heating industry and the off grid energy sector and in particular looking at ways in which we can work together to tackle fuel poverty,” says Mark Askew, Chief Executive of FPS.
“The new government and new Energy & Climate Change Secretary present a great opportunity to make the necessary changes to home heating policies.”
Mark Askew adds: “We will be writing to Amber Rudd to congratulate her and outline how we can best work together to make a real difference to the lives of those experiencing fuel poverty, especially rural fuel poverty.
“With the previous government, the policies simply didn’t work. The Green Deal put people off because of the prospect of debt; the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) policy was unaffordable for many; and the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund excluded oil condensing boilers.
By working with Amber Rudd on the issues that really matter to the oil heating industry, we feel positive that we will be able to help ensure the sector is better recognised in policies under the new regime.
“It’s time for change. We’ve had a change of government and now we are hopeful of a change in policies relating to the off grid energy sector and in particular the oil heating industry.”
FPS has expressed the need for strong representation of the industry in government, to ensure oil heating and off-grid energy are acknowledged in energy policies under the new regime.
“There are currently one million homes in rural England, Scotland and Wales, and almost half a million homes in Northern Ireland, heated by oil. It has been suggested that up to an estimated 80% of them are in the lowest energy rating with efficiency bands of F or G,” adds Mark Askew.
“This means these boilers are inefficient and cost more to run than modern condensing boilers. With a substantial number of inhabitants living in rural fuel poverty, we urge a change in Government Policies to incentivise the replacement of old and inefficient boilers in these houses with modern condensing boilers which are far cheaper to run and give off much less CO2.”
“Steps need to be taken to make homes more energy efficient, including a policy to improve the insulation of UK homes and making the reduction of fuel poverty and carbon emission the same goal.”
Sutherland Tables, the independent provider of comparable home heating costs for the most common fuels in the UK and Republic of Ireland, recently released data on the falling cost of heating oil.
“The price of heating oil is now cheaper than gas heating, whether you live in a new or older property, or have a condensing or conventional boiler,” Mark Askew comments.
“This is fantastic news for oil-heated homes and individuals living in off-grid homes, and is a great foundation on which we can all build upon – to better the situation for the oil heating sector and reduce fuel poverty.
“This is why we’re so looking forward to working with Amber Rudd on all issues relating to the industry and tackling fuel poverty – we know that, together, we can make a big difference.
“In the meantime, individuals who want to reduce their energy bills and enhance their current oil heating system and home for even greater efficiency can visit our website oilsave.org.uk for tips and information.”