Money from carbon tax ‘could cut household bills’

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Households in Scotland could slash their energy bills by more than a third if revenues collected from carbon taxes were ploughed into improving inefficient homes, a consumer watchdog has claimed.

Research by Consumer Futures believes that if the funds – worth almost £5 billion – were used for home energy efficiency improvements, 820,000 households in Scotland could benefit from an average investment of £5,800 per property, saving more than £500 a year on the typical annual energy bill.

The investment would also support the creation of about an extra 8,900 jobs in Scotland by 2027 and produce 2.3 million tonnes of carbon savings a year.

High energy prices will push 40 per cent of all Scottish homes into fuel poverty within two years, Consumer Futures has said.

Trisha McAuley, director for Scotland of Consumer Futures, said: “It is completely unacceptable that, in two years’ time, we’re heading for nearly a million homes in Scotland in fuel poverty.

“We need a 21st century solution to help the thousands of people struggling with energy bills. Millions of pounds in carbon taxes are collected and it’s time to put that money back in people’s pockets.”

She added: “Ploughing this money into creating energy-efficient homes in Scotland is a win-win for everyone – it will cut fuel bills and make homes cheaper to run, help to support jobs and the economy and reduce our carbon footprint.”