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Criticism of Government’s Energy Efficiency Scheme

May 22, 2014 | Energy Efficiency

Government Energy Efficiency Schemes criticised by Association for the Conservation of EnergyThe Association for the Conservation of Energy has criticised the government’s latest plans to improve energy efficiency.

The Association for the Conservation of Energy (ACE) has joined the backlash over the government’s latest plan to improve energy efficiency levels in the UK.

ACE director Andrew Warren criticised the decision to attempt to boost the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme by cutting green levies, which the government claimed would cut the average household’s annual energy bill by £50.

The government then announced the launch of the £150 million Green Deal Home Improvement Fund (GDHIF) earlier in the month, which it said would help to improve the UK’s housing stock.

But Mr Warren argued that the changes the government has made to the ECO programme are going to lead to an annual savings shortfall of at least 600,000 tonnes of CO2.

Speaking to Business Green, he said: “But it is clear that the new scheme can replace only 15 per cent of the losses. It would be quite miraculous for it to replace a large proportion of the 2.9 million tonnes of lifetime carbon dioxide savings, which the government has acknowledged the truncated ECO programme will no longer be able to deliver.”

 

Further Criticism Received from OFTEC

The government has faced regular criticism over its various energy efficiency schemes, with OFTEC recently claiming that the new GDHIF scheme excludes heating oil users.

Jeremy Hawksley, director general of OFTEC, stated that people who live in rural areas and are in fuel poverty are being held back from accessing funds through the scheme, while it also “discriminates” against heating oil buyers.

Mr Hawksley added: “We’ve been informed that ministers were advised that the recently launched domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) must be the only option for rural homes on oil, although gas homes can choose either the RHI or a simpler boiler upgrade.”

 

Green Deal Finance Company Takes Action 

In an attempt to boost the attractiveness of Green Deal plans, the Green Deal Finance Company (GDFC) recently cut early repayment charges. Mark Bayley, chief executive of the GDFC, stated that this would “make Green Deal Plans an even more attractive, accessible and predictable proposition for energy-saving home improvement”.

But the Green Deal has not been as successful as the government had hoped, with awareness of what the programme is and how it works still low among members of the general public.

 

Find Out More About This Story

Get the facts about the Green Deal from the government website: https://www.gov.uk/green-deal-energy-saving-measures/overview

The Green Deal Home Improvement Fund – a summary:  http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/analysis/2342594/green-deal-home-improvement-fund-at-a-glance

Photo: Sergeant Tom Robinson RLC/MOD [OGL (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/1/)], via Wikimedia Commons

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