When it launches this autumn, the Green Deal will become the most ambitious home improvement programme since the second world war. It is at the heart of the Government’s strategy, not just to Green our economy but to also help family’s improve their homes, cut their fuel bills and with that, reduce the UK’s dependence on expensive imported fossil fuels. But to achieve our ambitious goals, it will need to run for nearly two decades. A clear long term perspective, patience and pragmatism will be vital to its success as the market for the Green Deal builds and evolves.
In the next few weeks and months, working closely with the private sector and Local Authorities, we will put in place the final details of the scheme. But before those details have even been announced the sceptics and the critics have been sharpening their pencils. I have no doubt that after the scheme has gone live, with the benefit of real life experience, we will want to come forward with improvements to the way it works and in due course, additional incentives and appropriate penalties to keep it on track, as well as take account of exciting new technologies as they become available.
However the basic Green Deal framework for allowing people to make improvements to their home without any upfront cost which can then be paid for through electricity bills over twenty five years, from the very savings they create, leaving people better off; that is rock solid.
To some people this sounds too good to be true and others have misinterpreted existing research or just got their facts plain wrong. So I want to address some of the urban myths about the Green Deal that seem to be doing the rounds:
22 pioneer providers have already signed up to be part of the Green Deal from the initial stages and more are expected, here’s what a few of them have said:
– Sally Hancox, Director, Gentoo Group, said:
“Gentoo has a firm belief in the potential of the Green Deal to enable large scale retrofit programmes across the UK. The principles of the Green Deal are sound and as a group, Gentoo has a strong desire to enable its customers in Sunderland and others across the UK to benefit.”
– Rob Lambe, Managing Director, Willmott Dixon Energy Services said:
“In the UK we have become too used to living in cold uncomfortable homes with increasing numbers living in fuel poverty, under Green Deal, our strong tradition of home improvement will be able to readily combine aesthetics and function with increased warmth whilst protecting against rising fuel bills and climate change – a great business opportunity”
– Adam Hewson, Director, ReEnergise Finance Ltd said:
“We believe The Green Deal represents an important element in the overall drive to reduce carbon emissions and improve the UK’s overall energy efficiency. It is also a natural part of ReEnergise’s business model – combining energy advice, project management and finance.
– John Egan, CEO, Enact Energy Renewables Limited said:
“Enact is pleased to be a part of the Pioneer Green Deal Provider Group. The Green Deal promises to move the renewable and energy saving market on from the consideration of individual technologies and measures to a genuine ‘whole house’ approach to improving the energy performance of UK homes. The role of a Green Deal Provider very closely matches the role that Enact has played since 1996 under its own name, and in partnership with local councils, and over the last few years on behalf of Marks & Spencer and Tesco.”
– Phil Gilbert, Head of Energy Innovation, E.ON said:
“Green Deal has the potential to help millions of customers to improve their homes, cut their fuel bills and their carbon emissions, without needing to find the upfront investment.”