Today the government reveals that the Green Deal cashback scheme opens but Jonathan Leake of the Times asks is it all good news?

This is not new news but in the Sunday Times yesterday Jonathan talks about some of the problems associated with the Green Deal. The first main one is the roll out of loft and cavity wall insulation in the UK. With his report we are lead to believe that with the release of the Green Deal the amount of loft and cavity wall insulation will drop dramatically. From the 900,000 that where done last year could fall to fewer than 400,000.

The Green Deal is intended to reduce carbon emissions by persuading 14m householders to insulate and improve there homes, this also involves renewable technologies such as solar thermal, biomass boilers, heat pumps, double glazing and so on.

The impact assessment by the DECC warns of thousands of job losses. These in the cavity wall and loft insulation market. The ACE (the Association for the Conservation of Energy said this had already happened with a thousand workers before Xmas and another 1200 given notice. They expect 16,000 to lose jobs over the next few months.

The government has responded to this saying that the Green Deal will create more jobs than it destroys, 60,000 they estimate.

The cash back scheme has been set to go today. This will provide a 125m “cash back” for people taking up improvements under the Green Deal and people taking this up early could benefit from up to £1000.

There are 45 measures you can have under the Green Deal but all these start with insulation, just like solar PV panels under the fit’s scheme and solar thermal, biomass and heat pumps under the RHI. No insulation low or no tariff!

The Green Deal is a loan that can be paid back up to 25 years that goes on your electricity meter, you end up paying back the electricity company over this time for your insulation, renewable technology windows and so on.

This scheme is especially good for hard to treat homes such as solid wall properties. These can get external insulation which not only insulates the property but can make a drab old building look brand new. This is a positive in the fight against CO2 because about 45% of homes have solid walls and little of these have been treated.

There has been great work by the DECC to get this scheme up and running yet it still is undermined by the treasury who are calling it too radical.

What about solar PV?

Unfortunately it does not look like solar PV installations are going to be involved as part of the Green Deal as it was considered to expensive and with all the problems with the fit it was left to the side slightly. There are other finance schemes coming out for the solar PV industry and we will update you on these when we have more news.




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