Landlords sign up to tackle concerns about retrofit scheme
Power players join forces to ‘stress test’ green deal
Landlords, energy companies and major retailers have joined forces to provide the first comprehensive stress test of the government’s flagship retrofit scheme.
The move means two industry-led groups - one run by the UK Green Building Council and another led by the Green Deal Finance Company - have merged into a single super group. The group will work with the Department of Energy and Climate change to hone the details of the £7 billion a year scheme - known as the green deal - ahead of its soft launch in October.
Social landlords planning to become accredited providers have joined the group alongside the likes of energy giant British Gas and retailers Tesco and Marks & Spencer.
Under the retrofit programme, private sector companies will pay for households to receive energy-efficiency measures in their homes using private finance and will then use the resulting savings in energy bills to recoup the cost of the works over 25 years.
As well as the wider green deal providers group there will be a steering group of companies that will scrutinise the costs and governance of the programme to increase investor confidence in the scheme across the private sector.
Its members, some of which were among the 22 companies that last month signed an agreement to become green deal providers, include housing associations Affinity Sutton and Gentoo Group and it is made up of companies that have committed £5,000 each to pay for the group’s project management costs.
The body has formed working groups to cover 13 ‘key areas’ of concern, such as consumer credit and social housing, and plans to provide recommendations supported by evidence for the government on how to overcome hurdles by the end of June.
David Adams, deputy chair of the group and head of retrofit at contractor Willmott Dixon, said: ‘This is looking at the next 10 weeks and making sure we have all the boring details worked through now. In the past there has been more superficial discussion between DECC and various groups. This will allow DECC to engage properly with the organisations delivering the green deal end-to-end.’
Separately, a group of housing associations have formed a working group to address how to make the green deal work for housing.
Places for People, Affinity Sutton, Gentoo Group, Southern Housing Group, Black Country Housing and Accord have joined forces to work out the costs of delivering the scheme.