A £6 billion-a-year package of measures to improve energy efficiency could cut bills by £500 for millions of households, Labour claimed.
The scheme would fund upgrades to properties below energy performance certificate (EPC) band C.
Shadow climate change secretary Ed Miliband said Labour’s national warm homes plan would boost the efficiency of 19 million homes across the country over the next decade as he accused the Tories of failing to address the problem.
The attack on the Government’s record on improving energy efficiency comes ahead of next month’s local elections.
The warm homes scheme forms part of Labour’s £28 billion a year green prosperity plan.
Final details of how the plan would be funded will be set out by shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves at the next general election, but it would be likely to involve increased government borrowing to invest in green industries.
Labour said if the scheme had been implemented when they first called for it in 2021, two million of the coldest homes could have already been upgraded, saving households over £1 billion in total this year as bills soared due to the turmoil in global energy markets.
Mr Miliband said: “One of the reasons that energy bills are so high is the Conservatives’ disastrous record on heating our homes.
“Energy efficiency rates are now 20 times lower than under the last Labour government, but Rishi Sunak is breaking his manifesto promises, rather than upgrading homes.
“Labour’s Warm Homes Plan would upgrade the 19 million homes that need it, cutting bills and creating thousands of good jobs for electricians, engineers, and construction workers across the country.”
Labour claimed insulation rates fell by 92% following a 2013 cut in energy efficiency programmes and also pointed to analysis by climate change think tank E3G which identified a £2.1 billion gap in spending on pledges contained in the 2019 Conservative election manifesto.
The opposition’s analysis suggests the 19 million properties nationally which could benefit include 28,000 homes in the key election battleground of Great Yarmouth, while 21,000 properties in Stevenage and 60,000 in Oldham could be upgraded.
A Conservative spokesperson said: “Labour’s insulation plan is to stick £28 billion a year on the Government’s credit card – leaving your children to pick up the bill.
“In 2010, just 13% of homes were above Energy Performance (EPC) Band C – that is Labour’s record on insulation. We fixed their mess with almost 50% of homes with that rating today.
“Our Great British Insulation Scheme will support a further 300,000 homes to boost efficiency on top of the £6.6 billion invested over this parliament.”
Published: by Radio NewsHub