France plans to make further energy savings

The French government is going to adopt a plan to achieve further energy savings, based on advice from a group of experts created in June. The plan is expected to be announced in mid-December, with the first measures applying from early 2012.

Initial recommendations made on Friday include changing the way the two main incentives for home improvements, one of which is the eco-PTZ loan, are applied to encourage major renovations. The group also suggests using more energy saving certificates in the housing sector and imposing more obligations on utilities.

Another recommendation, perhaps more controversial, is to ban the use of neon lighting outside commercial premises after midnight. According to the government, electricity consumption in the French residential sector much higher than in other countries such as the Netherlands. The energy use of appliances is particularly high.

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