In response to the Governments ‘Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation’ consultation the Chartered Institute of Building questions the lack of incentives for consumers to get involved.
“The key to success is confidence. You are asking people to make a long term investment when governments typically operate short term. It is rare to see a government initiative last 10 years let alone five. As we saw with the feed in tariff, a sudden change in policy causes uncertainty and a loss in confidence. The sort of behavioural changes the green deal is asking the public to make has to be demonstrated by government in the same way,” said Chris Blythe CIOB Chief Executive.
In its current form the CIOB views the Green Deal as not offering any real incentives for consumers to install energy efficiency measures at their properties. Although the lack of upfront cost appears to be an obvious benefit, and there is a small amount of money available for ‘early adopters’, the fact remains that energy companies are struggling to give away free (or in some cases, incentivised) insulation. Research from Government has shown that consumers are either not motivated to make their property more energy efficient or lack the knowledge to do so.
Along with a lack of ‘carrot’ there appears to be an absence of appropriate ‘stick’ in place to guide the Green Deal into position. For example the CIOB suggests that ‘the use of enhanced Building Regulations that link the Green Deal in terms of consequential improvements when carrying out other works on properties could quicken the pace of change to the UK’s existing building stock’.
The CIOB recommends ensuring work is not undertaken unnecessarily when alternative solutions, which might be more beneficial in the long-term, ought to have been considered. Those assessing and advising need to be fully aware of the benefits of good maintenance and repair. The most simple and least expensive retrofit options may provide some of the best results, and should always be considered in the first instance.
A full copy of the CIOB response to the Green Deal can be found at:-
NOTES TO EDITORS
The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) represents for the public benefit the most diverse set of professionals in the construction industry.
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