Slashing emissions and energy bills: Home upgrades key to green revolution

(Reuters, 22 Jun 2022) Home improvements to cut down on energy use can help tackle climate change, wean Europe off Russian fossil fuels and save money – so why isn't energy efficiency being taken more seriously?

When TV producer Hadrien Wastiaux began house-hunting in Brussels two years ago, he knew he would have to invest in some green home improvements if he bought an older building - but he didn't realise how much of a headache it would be.

"You're just completely lost in the sea," he said.

From grappling with endless bureaucracy, to difficulty accessing loans and information, he is almost at the point of looking for cheaper options outside the Belgian capital.

Wastiaux, 39, was surprised to find that making green upgrades would be so complicated when the benefits of saving energy are well-known, including its role in curbing climate change.

"It should be mandatory because we have no other choice," he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Cutting back energy use is the cheapest, most effective way to save on bills, while also reducing carbon emissions to slow the pace of global warming, energy efficiency campaigners say.

New analysis from the International Energy Agency shows that doubling the current rate of improvement in energy intensity - the ratio of global energy supply per unit of gross domestic product - to 4% a year could save the equivalent of China's annual energy consumption by 2030.

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Reuters, 22 Jun 2022: Slashing emissions and energy bills: Home upgrades key to green revolution