Policies to improve the environmental standards of Britain’s building stock are little more than “empty rhetoric”, a committee of MPs will warn this week.

Instead, the government has “ignored the real issues in favour of easy headlines”, according to the report by the All Party Urban Development Group.

The report, seen by the FT, criticises ministers’ focus on new buildings – which account each year for only 1 per cent of stock. It wants the focus to shift to older shops and offices, which are responsible for emissions equivalent to 250,000 long-haul flights between London and New York.

Property provides a huge proportion of emissions because of the energy needed to provide heat and light. But the report will say that energy use can be cut by a third without any serious cost to landlords.

Financial Times