NEWS

International Carbon Reduction Puts Spotlight on Insulation

23 September 2013

Global carbon emissions could breach safe levels in as little as 15 years, according to a new report published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The stark revelation means that greater emphasis could be placed on the Government’s Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation, initiatives devised to reduce carbon emissions and improve energy efficiency.

Led by Lord Stern, former chief economist for the World Bank, and co-authored by more than 200 experts, the IPCC report claims that carbon emissions must not exceed 820 to 1,445 billion tonnes across the rest of the century. Failure to limit emissions to this figure could result in the global temperature rising 2°C, which is considered to be beyond the level of safety.

According to the report, about half a trillion tonnes of carbon has been emitted over the past 250 years as a direct result of burning fossil fuels. It is estimated that carbon dioxide levels have risen by 40% across that time. Furthermore, the report states that 50 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases are emitted every year, which means the safe level could be surpassed in the next 15-20 years.

The IPCC is now calling for a huge change in behaviour.

"If we continue to increase annual emissions, the budget will be depleted even sooner,” said Stern. “That is why I think nations, cities, communities and companies will recognise the importance of these findings and will increase the urgency and scale of the emission reductions that they are planning to undertake.”

While the rise in carbon dioxide levels has impacted the planet at a global level, generating extreme weather conditions and reducing the polar ice caps for example, changes made at a local level are being championed.

The Government’s Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation were created as a response to increasing carbon levels.

The measures available under the scheme have been identified as those that will both reduce carbon emissions and save householders money on their fuel bills. For example, with up to 25% of heat being lost through the roof, the installation of Loft Insulation can prevent this, thus reducing carbon emissions and cost. Likewise, Cavity Wall Insulation or Solid Wall Insulation can reduce up to 35% of heat and energy lost through walls.

As the IPCC calls for a reduction in the burning of fossil fuels, and as reserves of those fuels dwindle, it is likely that newer, cleaner energy sources will create higher fuel costs. This means that bill payers will need to find other ways to reduce their fuel costs, which means Loft Insulation, Cavity Wall Insulation, and Solid Wall Insulation will become even more valuable.

But it won’t only be the insulation available under the Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation that prove valuable. The other 40-plus measures will all offer householders a chance to counter the increasing cost of fuel bills.


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