Energy-Efficiency Visits for UK Household.
By Anne Lewis-Schneider
Teams of installers are to be sent out to visit UK households, street by street, in the latest bid by the green deal scheme to cut back on excessive energy bills. Britainís homes are not energy efficient, and with ever-increasing energy bills need to be brought on board with an energy efficiency package, which aims to bring about changes in energy savings, and lowering of carbon output.
Energy efficiency experts will go door-to-door, assessing each household as they go is hoped to encourage more households to join the initiative. Greg Barker, the Conservative Climate Change Minister has said that this is the most comprehensive way to get large numbers of households to sign up for green energy loans, upgrading their homes to a more energy efficient standard. These loans will be repaid through additions to their energy bills, but so far only 240 households are currently finalising their loans as of mid June. With close to 40 000 assessments already done this number falls far short of what is desired.
Government has put forward £20m for this scheme to be put into effect, and it is hoped that this will encourage more households to apply for loans. Costs to companies working together will be reduced because itís better to install major projects across several neighbouring buildings at one time. Mass assessment will bring solutions to householders and companies, thus removing the need to search out and employ green conversion companies, as this has been done. Lower income households, or those that require major improvements, will benefit from subsidies. This will in effect force households to Ďopt outí rather than waiting for them to decide to sign up for improvements.
Once the initial £20m is exhausted, councils will continue the initiative by applying for funds under the Energy Company Obligation, which requires contributions from energy suppliers to assist lower income groups. Taking out loans may be dampening enthusiasm for the green deal with interest rates up to 8%. To date only British Gas has a green deal offering, with the remaining big five companies bogged down in IT and legalities of agreements. Councils will have to join the funding initiative to receive part of this cash boost. 3 500 households have benefited from rebates, the majority of which have replaced boilers. Under a separate system, Eco has done approximately 115 installations for lower-income households.
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