13 Jan 2010 11:01:02
Low carbon emissions must be a priority, public tells regulator
A consumer panel has told the electricity and gas markets regulator Ofgem that it must make companies reduce their carbon emissions.
The regulator created the Consumer First Panel in 2008 as an extension of its Consumer First Programme which it uses to understand the concerns and expectation of ordinary energy customers.
For the 2009 panel, 100 individuals were selected from Bristol, Aberdeen, London, Aberystwyth and Bradford.
Key priorities for panel members were securing resources for future generations, "being green", "doing the right thing" and ensuring that warmth is affordable for poor people.
The government was criticised for not leading on the issue by highlighting EU-wide climate change target goals and providing more accessible information on how to be energy-efficient in the home.
Ofgem's senior partner for sustainable development, Sarah Harrison, said: "Ofgem's Consumer First Panel provides valuable insights that help shape Ofgem's decisions.
"The panel's views will help Ofgem's work to promote sustainable energy solutions and deliver low carbon initiatives such as the roll out of smart meters."
Last year's panel members made environmentally-friendly changes to their lifestyle after the debate such as using less water to shower and using energy saving lightbulbs, according to the regulator.http://tinyurl.com/ydd4ysa