Public sector bosses should cut energy not staff

Public sector energy savings could prevent staff from losing their jobs and protect front-line services, a London conference has been told. Government departments should look at cutting budgets by reducing […]

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By Janet Knight at Greening the Public Sector

Public sector energy savings could prevent staff from losing their jobs and protect front-line services, a London conference has been told.

Government departments should look at cutting budgets by reducing its energy consumption not staff, says senior public sector figure Colin Cram.

Mr Cram told ELN: “I’m afraid a lot of people could be fired from the public sector who need not be and that would have unnecessary implications on front-line services.”

The chair of the Greening the Public Sector conference last week told delegates: “The public sector spends £3,000 million [sic] pounds each year on energy and emits 10 million tonnes of CO2. If we could save around 14% of this energy that would equate to £150m pounds.

“An average public sector job costs £30,000, so for every million pounds we save, we could prevent 33 people losing their jobs. It would be an enormous pity if people start to get fired because we are not paying attention to reducing our carbon footprint. It’s up to all of us to spread this message.”

However, he did express hope that the Liberal Democrats’ green commitments would help the government address the UK’s carbon reduction and sustainability issues.