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Energy Act 2008

Commentary on Sections

Section 87: Energy reports and Schedule 5: Repeals

454.Section 1 of the Sustainable Energy Act 2003 (c.30) (“2003 Act”) requires the Secretary of State to report annually on progress towards sustainable energy aims. The four energy goals set out in the 2003 Energy White Paper Our Energy Future – creating a low carbon economy are:

  • to put the UK on a path to cut carbon dioxide emissions by some 60% by about 2050, with real progress by 2020;

  • to maintain the reliability of energy supplies;

  • to promote competitive markets in the UK and beyond, helping to raise the rate of sustainable economic growth and to improve productivity; and

  • to ensure that every home is adequately and affordably heated.

455.The requirements concerning publication of the report on progress towards these energy goals, including when and what it must include, are set out in section 1 of the 2003 Act. This section has since been amended, in particular by section 81 of the Energy Act 2004. The amendment made by that section requires more detailed reporting, as the Secretary of State considers appropriate, on the development or bringing into use of certain energy sources and technologies listed in that Act.

456.Subsection (1) of this section changes the reporting period from 24 February until 23 February each year, to each year beginning with 1 January and ending with 31 December. In consequence of that change, the section also changes the publication date so as to requires the annual report to be published between the period 1 January and 31 October following the reporting period to which it relates.

457.Subsection (1) also removes the requirement to include detail on specific energy sources and technologies. The effect is that the report will focus on progress toward meeting the four main energy policy goals, rather than the detail of developments in smaller more specialised, technology-specific areas of the energy sector. The Sustainable Energy Act 2003 (sections 2 and 3) and Housing Act 2004 (s217(1)) both contain provisions regarding energy efficiency in residential accommodation. Subsection (1) also removes the requirement to report on progress toward (but not the duty to designate or publish) the energy efficiency aims in the 2003 Act.

458.The repeals in Schedule 5 include repeals which are necessary because of the effect of section 87. Section 18 of the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Act 2006 (c.19) is also repealed as the obligation is now spent.

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