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National Infrastructure Commission call for evidence

The National Infrastructure Commission is a new body set up to carry out independent and unbiased assessments of the UK’s long-term infrastructure needs and to provide impartial advice to ministers and Parliament.

Objectives of the consultation

The Commission has been tasked with carrying out studies of the following three pressing infrastructure challenges and to publish reports before the 2016 Budget:

  1. Improving connectivity between cities in the north of England
  2. Large-scale transport infrastructure improvements in London
  3. Improving how electricity demand and supply are balanced

This call for evidence set out the key questions for each of the three reports and provided an opportunity for those with an interest to make submissions. 

In the third study, which was of particular interest to CIBSE, the Commission was seeking evidence on the following questions:

  • What changes may need to be made to the electricity market to ensure that supply and demand are balanced, whilst minimising cost to consumers, over the long-term?
  • What are the barriers to the deployment of energy storage capacity?
  • What level of electricity interconnection is likely to be in the best interests of consumers?
  • What can the UK learn from international best practice in terms of dealing with changes in energy technology when planning to balance supply and demand?

This call for evidence closed on 8 January 2016.

CIBSE response

CIBSE understands that reducing demand is a more time and cost effective approach than investing in new generation and distribution capacity. However, improving energy security and reducing consumer bills are positive outcomes of a greater focus on energy efficiency, and would benefit from a coherent overall approach. Reducing energy demand in existing buildings (domestic and non-domestic) is an effective way to reduce consumption and costs and therefore to reduce demand on the national electricity infrastructure. This will then free up funds to be invested in other pressing types of national infrastructure issues, such as those highlighted in this call for evidence.

CIBSE has the experience and knowledge to improve the performance of building stock, but need Government to provide an appropriate policy and legislative infrastructure to support and implement this on a national scale.

To read CIBSE submission please follow the link below.