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Labour’s Plan To Retrofit Every House – They’re Insane


Insanity is, as Albert Einstein himself told us, doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

Which brings us to the Labour Party’s idea for British housing.

Recommendation 2: Retrofit almost all of the UK’s 27 million homes by 2030 to the highest energy efficiency standards feasible for each building to reduce domestic heat demand by 23% relative to current levels.

We’ve actually done this before. Twice. So why are we expecting a different answer this time?

But much more than theory or haggling over technical details, we have excellent empirical evidence that a Green New Deal just does not work. It’s been tried, twice, on different sides of the world and it didn’t work either time.

The first time it was Australia. The global recession hits, so as a nice bit of Keynesian pump-priming they figured: Why not insulate the houses of the nation and thereby protect, or even limit, climate change? This plan from the central government meant that every bodger, crook, and incompetent got grants and tax money to ruin houses. They even had a Royal Commission to tell us all what a disaster it was. It is not a usual belief that either Britain or the U.S. have fewer chancers than Australia.

Despite this report, the British government decided to do the same thing. A central plan, with targets, disbursing rivers of tax money, to insulate the houses of the nation. This was then done so badly that there are fears that as many as a million houses have been ruined, and certainly thousands have been turned into entirely useful mushroom farms and not useful dwellings.

They’re insane. But then, you know, they’re the Labour Party.

If you actually want to insulate houses then you change the incentive for the people living in them to change that insulation. You tax domestic heating fuel that is – you know, Lord Stern’s carbon tax? When it actually makes sense for individual people to insulate an individual house then they will do so. And carefully and effectively.

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Leo Savantt
Leo Savantt
2 years ago

Labour certainly are not sane, but are the Tories any better? Zero CO2 emissions by 2050, probably impossible, certainly poverty making and definitely pointless.

The UK’s contribution to world wide anthropocentric CO2 is about 1% and is falling both in relative and real terms; it is just 0.000001% of the atmosphere, or put another way only 1 part in 100,000,000. This suggests that the Lib Dems, Labour, Tories and the Greens are all equally as mad as a box of frogs.

Leo Savantt
Leo Savantt
2 years ago

Yes, certainly they are not sane but neither are the Tories, who want zero emissions of CO2 by 2050, probably not possible, certainly poverty making and definitely utterly pointless.

The UK emits approximately 1% of anthropocentric OC2 world wide, which is a measly 1 part of the atmosphere per 100,000,000. They are all mad.

Douglas Milnes
2 years ago

I suspect that this policy is intended as a backdoor to having most homes owned by the government. The government says to a home owner “you must do ???? and we will provide the loan to do so”. Then, when the home owner can’t pay back the loan, the home is repossessed (not that they ever possessed it in the first place) and becomes state property, to be rented back to the prior owners.

2 years ago

In Australia, also directly responsible for four deaths.

I was living in an old house at the time with ancient wiring. Undisturbed, fine, but installing insulation would have been very likely to cause a fire – as happened to many others. Fortunately, under that scheme I had the option of turning it down, despite the pleas from the cowboys – “but it’s free, how can you say no?”

There is also the impact on established businesses to consider – artificially pulling forward the demand for the next 20 years years kinda wrecks their business model.

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