Retailers have called on European lawmakers to demonstrate their commitment to combating climate change by cutting tax on energy-saving items and other green household goods.

The British Retail Consortium today called for Brussels to lower VAT on products with high potential for energy savings – including televisions, other appliances and home lighting – in a letter to European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso.

“Major retailers are continuing to adopt green business practices as a means of achieving efficiency savings, as well as in response to consumer pressure for greener goods,” the letter reads.

“We are helping millions of people make straightforward, affordable and more sustainable choices but we need politicians to help us go further. Reducing VAT on energy-efficient consumer goods is an essential part of delivering sustainability.”

BRC Brussels director Alisdair Gray said: “Price is an important factor in customers’ buying decisions. Retailers are doing a great deal [but] they need and deserve help to achieve more. By cutting VAT on ‘greener’ household goods, the Commission will show it’s matching rhetoric with policy.”