The Government announces a £2bn Green Homes Energy Package
At last……some good news for our industry
It all started last week with Energy efficiency groups urging the Chancellor to introduce a street by street energy efficiency retrofit scheme.
Ahead of the Economic Statement issued this week, nine energy efficiency industry groups including INCA came together to write to Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, calling for the introduction of major energy efficiency stimulus within the UK economic recovery package. In a letter to the Chancellor they express disappointment that refurbishing existing homes did not feature within the Prime Minister’s ‘Build Back Better’ speech in Dudley on 30th June.
The full report:
NIA street by street local led energy revolution
Then hey presto this week……………..
The Government announces a £2bn Green Homes Energy Package.
A major new voucher scheme is scheduled to start as early as September to help households towards the cost of energy efficiency upgrades. The funding is set to last a year and is regarded as a “significant down payment” on the government’s longer-term energy efficiency plans. Energy efficiency retrofitting is long overdue and the funding of £5,000 per household to kick start decarbonising existing housing stock is indeed very welcome.
Business Secretary Alok Sharma told BBC Breakfast (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-53313640) that under the Green Homes Grant hundreds of thousands of homeowners will receive vouchers of up to £5,000 to cover at least to two thirds of the cost of energy-saving home improvements. He confirmed the scheme would cover double glazing, insulation, and other approved measures.
Moreover, poorer households could qualify for more generous grants worth up to £10,000 per household that would cover the full cost of any work.
Alongside the voucher scheme, the government is also preparing to unveil a £50m pilot project to trial innovative approaches to retrofitting social housing at scale that would see measures such as heat pumps, insulation, and double glazing, so as to help landlords improve the least energy efficient social rented homes in England.
Retrofitting existing building stock to become more energy efficient is also undoubtedly a much-needed step towards achieving the net zero carbon target of 2050.
It is worth noting that the ‘green energy package’ has not been welcomed by all members of Government resulting in a ‘Whitehall turf war’ after Downing Street chief adviser Dominic Cummings sought to water down the policy. Mr. Cummings has privately argued that the cash should be spent on building new homes instead — with insulation a priority later. Thankfully, there is still enthusiasm for the scheme in the Treasury and BEIS, the business department, and several Whitehall figures are blaming Mr. Cummings for the deadlock. One said the Number 10 adviser saw the project as “boring old housing insulation” whist another said he was sceptical about the 2050 net-zero target. Another said Mr. Cummings believed new housing was a bigger priority and should take the lion’s share of the £9bn capital spending.
The INCA website will be updated as information becomes clearer so please watch the space.