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Government abandons making all New Zealand homes warm

David Shearer
Energy Spokesperson

21 May 2014

Government abandons making all New Zealand homes warm

The Budget has confirmed that National has virtually abandoned its programme of insulating cold and damp homes across New Zealand, says Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer.

“As a result, the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority will cut 20 percent of its current staff and just $30 million a year will be allocated to fund home insulation.”

“The Government’s previous $347 million programme had insulated over 230,000 homes, something that it frequently boasted about.

“This latest cut means around only 15,000 homes will be insulated. Energy Minister, Simon Bridges has been a casualty of Bill English’s desperation to get his budget across the line into surplus regardless of the impact.

“Currently 600,000 houses remain uninsulated across New Zealand. Around 300,000 of those homes are lived in by people on low incomes.

“Numerous studies have shown that children living in warm dry homes are less likely to have rheumatic fever and respiratory conditions. That saves millions in our health bill.

“Labour will ensure that all rental properties are brought up to standard and landlords will have to install insulation and an efficient heating source.

“Only five percent of landlords have taken up the government’s insulation programme. Yet, a 2010 survey by BRANZ found that only 22 per cent of rental properties were in a good condition. Most lacked basic insulation.

“The Greens must be smarting too that their one agreement with the National Government is now in tatters.”

ENDS

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