Lucy Pedler, director of the Green Register, has called on energy prices to rise tenfold in order to encourage greater energy efficiency measures.

The architect and Archipeleco practice founder said that such a drastic increase in energy prices is the only way to snap businesses and the public into action.

Pedler’s comments come in a week which saw the Royal Society publish a study in which experts said that consumers will need to pay more for energy to finance the technologies needed to tackle climate change.

John Shepherd, climate scientist at Southampton University and co-author of the report, said: “We have adapted to an energy price which is unrealistically low if we’re going to try and preserve the environment.

“We have to allow the economy to adapt to higher energy prices through carbon prices and that will then make things like renewables and nuclear more economic, as carbon-based alternatives become more expensive.”

The idea of paying 10 times more would most certainly face stern opposition from the consumer. Pedler did concede that concessions would have to be made for those affected by fuel poverty but said it was a way to combat climate change

Pedler said: “The problem is that there’s no one thing that’s crystalising the issue of energy efficiency. If you were to increase energy prices that dramatically you would definitely see a change in the approach to energy consumption.”

The Green Register was launched in October 2000 as a network of construction professionals committed to good practice in sustainability. In order to become part of the Register, members must attend a 2-day seminar on sustainability, to express their commitment.

Look for an interview with Lucy Pedler in the September issue of BSD magazine.