MPs call for Green Homes Grant replacement

A cross-party group of MPs has called for the Green Homes Grant to be replaced with a new and improved energy efficiency scheme in the upcoming Spending Review.

UK homes currently account for 20% of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions, however, in March this year, the government announced the scrapping of the Green Homes Grant scheme, which was intended to help households to retrofit their homes.

In response to this, the environmental audit committee (EAC) has written to the business secretary calling for clarity for contractors and homeowners.

The EAC has said they welcome the increased funding and extended timescale for the Local Authority Delivery element of the Green Homes Grant and for the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund.

However, they have stressed that this will only be effective in areas where local authorities have appropriate resource and capacity, otherwise a ‘postcode lottery’ is likely to ensue.

The EAC has said also they look forward to the Heat and Building Strategy where they hope that provisions will be made for a multi-year energy efficiency programme in the next Spending Review.

EAC chairman Philip Dunne said: ‘We have been clear all along: the Green Homes Grant was a good initiative but was poorly implemented.

‘This government has shown its willingness to be an environmental world leader, but I fear its green credentials risk being undermined by poor policy decisions. Actions speak louder than words, and simply abandoning a critically important decarbonisation scheme when cracks appeared sets a poor example in the year we aim to show climate leadership.

‘Cutting emissions starts at home. The homes we live in contribute a huge amount of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions, so undertaking effective retrofits and stemming those emissions is key to reaching net-zero by 2050.

‘Businesses need to get behind low-carbon housing and have the confidence to upskill employees. Householders need to get behind low-carbon housing and understand how energy efficiency can be enhanced and heating costs cut.

‘Above all, the government must get behind low-carbon housing and comprehend the complexity of decarbonising our housing stock, committing to initiatives essential to make net-zero Britain a reality.’

Photo Credit – Pixabay

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Pippa Neill

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