It started on the 1st October 2012 but is the Green Deal here to stay? There has been much debate over the policy itself and the level of engagement with the policy by the public. “You can’t give insulation away” is a cry that is often heard.
The Green Deal has an innovative finance mechanism where there is no up-front cost for the measures. They are financed through a loan against the property (not the householder) that is paid back out of the predicted fuel bill savings that will be enjoyed through installation of the energy saving products – the so-called ‘Golden Rule’.
However, will a loan against the property be a barrier when it comes time to sell?
Will people be uncomfortable taking out credit on their house or, in a world built on mortgages, loans and credit cards will it hardly be noticed?
Linked to the Green Deal is the Energy Company Obligation (ECO). This is due to replace the current CERT & CESP obligation programmes that finish at the end of December 2012. These programmes have given us subsidised rolls of insulation, free light bulbs and in some cases free insulation for cavity walls and lofts.
ECO aims to reduce the carbon output from the existing housing stock and particularly from those households that have been classed as ‘hard to treat’ under previous obligations, such as solid wall properties and as a result have gone untouched. How effective will ECO really be at starting to look at the 7 million solid wall properties in the UK? At £1.3bn per year, is it enough to really make a dent in the UK’s carbon reduction commitments or would that be better spent elsewhere?
The Green Deal is the Governments flagship energy efficiency policy and will be here, we are told for 10 years.
Do you think it will last that long?
Will European directives such as the Energy Efficiency Directive mean that the UK Green Deal must survive at all costs?
How effective will it really be at reducing fuel bills in the UK’s 26 million homes? Time will tell…..