Last week a member of the public got in touch with us in some confusion over the recommendations he received in the post from the Energy Saving Trust. They claimed they could save him no less than £1,849 on fuel bills, but in reality their misjudged advice threatened to increase his annual heating bill and his CO2 emissions.
Even at first glance the saving of £1,849 sounded somewhat ambitious, namely because our man’s total annual bill for electricity only came to £1,250 to start with (and he doesn’t use oil or gas). Alas, the recommendations don’t include any tips on how to generate your own energy and sell it at a profit, so this was the first glaring error. The first of many as it turns out...
The Energy Saving Trust says that £69 should be spent on loft insulation, but Mr. Miffed already had the insulation installed by the EST’s own registered installer at no cost just two months ago. They then recommend that he should spend a whacking £1,390 on storage heaters, despite the fact that the home in question had a sub-soil heat recovery system with a high efficiency heat-pump which was installed with the aid of a government grant two years ago.
And there’s more – why not invest £390 on insulation for solid walls? Well because it’d be rather pointless as Mr. Miffed has cavity walls with insulation in the cavity.
So where on earth is this body getting the information on which they base these strange suggestions? Well, they say the gentlemen in question filled out a form, but not only is Mr. Miffed adamant he never filled out anything of the sort, he’s also been a Chartered Engineer and has himself designed and built two houses with innovative heating systems that make him something of an expert on the topic.
It’s fair to say, if he had filled out a questionnaire he’d have done it pretty conscientiously and it probably would’ve stuck in the mind.
Incompetence, confusion and misinformation – is this really benefitting anyone? Given that this body receives millions of pounds from the taxpayer, it seems it actually has the potential to be quite destructive.
Mr. Miffed-member-of-the-public ends his letter: “I suggest that if you are looking for additional areas where cost savings can be made with minimal adverse effect, the Energy Saving Trust should be top of your list”.
He may have a point.