Government’s own figures show that Green Deal could fail


Predictions for the Government’s ‘flagship’ Green Deal policy show that there will be a drop in the number of people taking up energy efficient measures. Charlotte Reid has more.

The Government’s green policy to make the UK’s homes more energy efficient looks set to fall short as their own figures show there will be a drop in the uptake of energy efficient measures, such as loft insulation and insulating cavity walls.

The Green Deal is a flagship policy to help transform the energy efficiency of homes, as the current Government try to be the greenest ever. It was given the green light when the Energy Bill was approved into law in October 2011.

The new data, which was obtained by Building Magazine, from an assessment by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) casts doubt over the Green Deal, which starts in October.

Under current Government schemes that subsidise insulation, over 1m homes a year have had their lofts insulated. This is predicted to drop below 70,000 a year when the Green Deal comes into effect. That figure needs to be 2m a year to meet climate targets.

The same applies to filling cavity walls – currently there are 510,000 cavity walls being filled a year, which will drop to 170,000 a year once the Green Deal is in place. Again below the desired target figure of 1.4m.

David Kennedy, chief executive of the Committee on Climate Change, said in The Guardian, “The paradox is that the Government’s own impact assessment suggests the policy will not deliver its objective.

There is a difference between the rhetoric and their own assessment”.

This news comes after it was revealed by the Royal Academy of Engineering that plumbers and heating installers are unprepared for a move to energy efficient homes.

Chris Huhne, the energy and climate change secretary, said, “When it’s introduced, the Green Deal will be as easy as ABC by making work affordable, providing bespoke independent advice and choice in the market from well-known and trusted high street names”. Whilst Greg Barker, climate change minister, said the Green Deal would be a “massive business opportunity”.

Making homes more energy efficient is important, as Blue & Green Tomorrow has written about before.

Although there has been an rising interest in building sustainable homes, buildings that wouldn’t look out of place in an episode of Grand Designs, there are existing homes that are leaking energy. In the UK there are currently 14m homes and 29% of carbon emissions come from them, so it is important to start making these energy efficient.

Luke Tozer, an architect from Pitman Tozer Architects and creator of the Gap House, said, “It’s all very well peppering the south facing roofs with PVs but actually what you want to do is reduce the amount of energy that is being used in the first place”.

If you want to start saving more energy then consider using home grown energy from Good Energy instead of using fossil fuels and carbon to heat and light your home.

Picture source: James Bowe