Mr. Tom Ellis
asked the Secretary of State for Energy whether he is satisfied with the arrangements he has for gathering 430W statistical information to enable him objectively to assess the effects of any measures he introduces for energy conservation; and, if not, what proposals he has for improving them.
§ Mr. Oakes
Energy consumption is affected by a wide variety of factors, notably economic activity, temperature, and prices, in addition to the effects of energy conservation measures. Although there is always scope for improving the statistical base for decision making, a great deal of information is available from existing sources to provide guidance for energy conservation policy. In view of the need to contain public expenditure and of inevitable difficulties associated with acquiring and interpreting the data, I do not consider it desirable to increase the level of resources devoted to gathering statistical information for this purpose.