ECO - the wait is over - now lets work up the detail

05/Dec/2013
Blog Author: 
Austin Baggett

 

So after weeks of speculation we now have had the Chancellor's Autumn Statement, preceded a couple of days ago by DECC's announcements on proposed changes to both ECO and Green Deal.

ECO has certainly been weakened with targets stretched out from 2 years to 4 years and a serious cut back in the targets for the Carbon Emissions Reduction element which will dramatically scale back solid wall insulation activity. However the pill is sweetened by the annoucement of some new initiatives, including up to £1000 of help for new homebuyers to spend on energy saving measures.

The devil will be in the detail, and until the detail is known it is impossible to know what the true additionality of these "new" initiatives actually is over and above existing schemes such as Green Deal Cashback. Around 800,000 households currently move home every year - a perfect time to take advantage of installing some energy efficiency measures. Let's push for this to be the start of a serious conversation about how best to motivate home movers to take up the obvious missing measures - such as an efficient boiler, controls and insulation - in their new home. With mortgage rates currently so low, these measures will pay back in just a few years. A small stamp duty rebate as an incentive may be the cheapest way to stimulate a real impact on take up. The Chancellor said today "give people incentives....going green doesn't have to cost the earth".  Surely this would be right up the Chancellor's street?

Austin Baggett is managing director of National Energy Services

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