Protest at government handling of CRC scheme

Posted on 18 Jul 2011 by The Manufacturer

A report surveying businesses by nPower called the Business Energy Index found that there is widespread disquiet among businesses over the CRC scheme.

nPower’s Business Energy Index (nBEI) is conducted on an annual basis and tracks attitudes and opinions towards energy use, energy risk and carbon emissions.

The report also contains evidence showing that 34% of respondents believed that “removal of recycled payments from the scheme has had a negative impact on plans to invest in energy saving measures.” 46% of respondents felt they had not received enough advice and explanation of the details of the scheme from the government on the Carbon Reduction Commitments (CRC) since it was implemented in April 2010.

26% want the scheme scrapped completely, while 52% wanted there to be no more changes to the scheme. 82% required more clarity of what is needed from their business. Over two thirds of businesses believe that the target to reduce emissions by 2050 is unrealistic.

Most businesses that responded to the nBEI expressed support for the CRC scheme, however. Of those surveyed, 72% of businesses have invested in energy efficiency measures as a direct result of their participation in the scheme, 62% have installed smart meters and 20% have taken on extra staff to meet the required energy-saving goals.

Changes to the scheme have lead to confusion and disillusionment among manufacturers – and on July 29 all businesses are obliged to report their carbon footprint. The nBEI reveals that many businesses aren’t confident they meet the government’s requirements by that date, the report shows.

Dave Lewis, head of business energy services at nPower, commented: “The issues businesses have faced since the implementation of the CRC and through its subsequent changes have lead to ongoing confusion.” He added that nPower sees this as a serious cause for concern as July 29 fast approaches.

George Archer