Six-month delay to Peter Bonfield’s report on energy saving scheme blamed on ministerial changes

Palace of Westminster

The government is coming under renewed pressure to publish the Bonfield Review as it reaches a six-month delay.

The review into the government’s energy efficiency policy by BRE chief executive Peter Bonfield was originally due to be published in March, but has been repeatedly pushed back.

Speaking to Building in April, Bonfield said he expected his review to be published “some time in May” in the period between local elections and the run-up to the EU referendum, but it still has not been published.

A BRE spokesperson told Building the delay was down to ministerial changes after the Department of Energy and Climate Change was abolished.

The Bonfield Review was co-commissioned in July last year by then-energy secretary Amber Rudd and former communities secretary Greg Clark, who is now in charge of the new Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), which will publish Bonfield’s review.

The review will be one of the first things in the in-tray of the new energy minister Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe, whose portfolio includes energy efficiency and fuel poverty.

Richard Twinn, policy adviser at the UKGBC, said: “The main thing with this delay is that it’s just quite frustrating. People are keen to see the outcomes [of the Bonfield Review]. It would be nice if there was more guidance about when it was forthcoming.”

In response to the delays, a BEIS spokesperson said: “This is an independent review that was jointly commissioned in 2015 by the former secretaries of state for DECC and DCLG, Amber Rudd and Greg Clark.

“The review is ongoing and its recommendations will be published in due course.”

Speaking in April, Bonfield said there would be a particular focus on consumers and on getting the private sector more involved in delivering energy efficiency measures.

He said: “What was necessary was especially that the private sector gripped the problems and opportunities that are derived from putting in energy efficiency measures.

“We needed a team effort between the private and public sectors […] to ensure customers are properly advised and protected.”