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Green policies 'will hurt the poor'

Tuesday July 13th 2010

The poorest people in the UK will see little benefit from new climate change policies, a government advisory group has warned.

The Government's 'green deal' scheme, which will see energy efficiency measures such as insulation paid for by savings on bills, has come in for particular criticism, with the Fuel Poverty Advisory Group warning that the financial rewards will be smallest for those languishing in fuel poverty.

The group also warned that the poorest and most vulnerable consumers in the UK could also be served a double blow following uncertainty over the future of Government grants aimed at relieving the impact of fuel poverty such as the Warm Front scheme.

Some 4.6 million households in England are living in fuel poverty where homeowners spend more than 10% of their income heating their homes, it said.

The group added that the number of households living in fuel poverty has quadrupled in the past six years in line with a 125% increase in the cost of energy bills.

While establishing the UK as a world leader of low carbon living is essential, the poorest will still be hit hardest by plans to overhaul the country's energy infrastructure, the group said.

Copyright © Press Association 2010

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