Age Cymru and its national partners Age UK, Age NI and Age Scotland are the latest charities to join the Energy Bill Revolution – a coalition of more than 100 businesses and charities calling on the UK Government to use the money it gets from carbon taxes to make our homes super-energy efficient.
Age Cymru is joining the alliance to help reduce preventable winter deaths among older people, as part of its ‘Spread the Warmth’ campaign.
There are around 27,000 excess winter deaths in England and Wales each year – more than fifteen times the number of people who die in road traffic accidents each year.
Research shows that the majority of excess winter deaths are due to heart attacks, strokes and respiratory problems brought about by exposure to low temperatures.
Cold homes are a big factor, with excess winter death rates three times higher in the coldest homes than in the warmest.
Improving the energy efficiency of older people’s homes would offer a once and for all solution to help people keep warm, protect their health in winter and reduce fuel poverty.
In a bid to end fuel poverty and the scandal of people dying needlessly from the cold, the Energy Bill Revolution is calling on the UK Government to spend carbon taxes from the European Emissions Trading Scheme and the Carbon Floor Price to make the UK’s homes more energy efficient.
It is enough, for example, to provide £6,500 to 600,000 fuel poor homes every year to make their homes highly energy efficient.
Graeme Francis, Age Cymru’s Head of Policy and Public Affairs, said:
“We know that cold homes are contributing to high numbers of older people dying each winter.
“Yet the situation is preventable by improving the energy efficiency of our homes which will help older people stay warmer without having to spend more on energy bills.
“The Energy Bill Revolution offers a real solution to ending fuel poverty and Age Cymru will work closely with the alliance to put pressure on the UK Government to take action.”
Ed Matthew, Director of Transform UK, the organisation which is coordinating the alliance campaign said:
“The Energy Bill Revolution is delighted to welcome on board Age Cymru, Age UK, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI.
“This is now the biggest and most powerful fuel poverty alliance that has ever been created.
“We are united by our belief that fuel poverty can be eradicated and our conviction that there is a financial solution.
“There is enough carbon tax revenue to make the homes of all the fuel poor super energy efficient. We must grasp this opportunity to end the suffering.”