The Bonfield Review: Better late than never?

Managing Director, Bevan Jones (Sustainable Homes)

Original Blog:

The Bonfield Review – Each Home Counts, snuck out in December to as much fanfare as you could expect on a Friday afternoon a week before Christmas. The outcomes of Dr Peter Bonfield’s review have been long awaited. The much delayed report has been eagerly anticipated, but a quick reminder of the scope of the review is needed:

When choosing to install energy efficiency or renewable energy measures in their homes, consumers rely on a framework of standards to ensure that they are protected and get a good quality outcome.

…This review will draw together evidence in relation to weaknesses in the existing framework of standards and propose how it can be made more robust for consumers, while encouraging investment and promoting innovation.

The review will cover the following issues:

  • Consumer advice and protection: what supports consumers’ decisions ahead of an installation and what assistance is available when things go wrong?
  • Standards framework: what ensures that the right products are fitted to the right properties in the right way during the installation?
  • Monitoring and enforcement: what ensures that poor quality work is dealt with effectively, and do the arrangements for audit, compliance-checking and sanctions provide sufficient assurance of this?

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Prioritising Britain’s Solid Walled Homes

Chief Executive Officer, Gearoid Lane (Agility Eco)

AgilityEco has been proud to support INCA in championing the Solid Wall Industry’s cause with government. We recently supported INCA in formulating its response to the ECO “Help to Heat” consultation and over the course of that work we spent time with a number of BEIS officials and analysts to really understand, and question, BEIS’s assessment. AgilityEco and INCA’s shared message has been crystal clear from the outset: solid walled homes, which house many of Britain’s poorest and most vulnerable residents MUST be prioritised in government energy efficiency policy.

As we’ve said previously, we see SWI as the key to combating fuel poverty. There are more than 8 million solid walled homes in Britain, a third of all of our housing. Nearly half of those in fuel poverty live in solid walled houses. Uninsulated solid wall properties are highly inefficient, typically leaking twice as much heat as cavity walls, resulting in extremely high fuel bills for their occupants. SWI therefore delivers huge benefits for those living in solid wall homes (average annual savings of £490 per annum compared to £140 for cavity wall insulation), benefits that have not been delivered at any scale under successive supplier obligations, despite these households contributing hugely to the cost of those schemes. Moreover, owners (particularly social landlords and private householders) have been willing to make significant contributions to the cost of SWI works, keeping the cost to all energy bill payers down.  SWI results in significant job creation, delivers huge benefits to the exchequer (multiplier effect), whilst providing significant social and housing regeneration benefits.

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Vision for the EWI Industry

INCA Chairman, Mitch Gee (SPSenvirowall)

External wall insulation is on the edge of a revolution. It has already become the ‘go to’ cladding for cost-effective decorative finishes for housing, schools and hospitals. But for the retrofit market we have only just scratched the surface of the millions of solid wall properties that require insulation. Once it has been determined how this essential work will be paid for, the demand for our products and skills will be unprecedented. But we cannot rest on our laurels. We need to be ready to deliver high quality systems and apply them to the highest standards, and delivering quality is at the heart of everything INCA does.

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