A Greater London Authority (GLA) project to support social landlords across England with their decarbonisation programmes has launched.
The Social Housing Retrofit Accelerator is aimed at helping housing providers as they develop bids for the first wave of the £3.8bn Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, which is worth £160m and set to open in the autumn.
Social landlords will now be able to access the GLA scheme to get free technical guidance on retrofitting their homes to cut carbon emissions and reduce heating bills.
It is backed by £3.45m in funding from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and is intended to help speed up energy-efficiency work in social housing across the country.
Professional services consultancy Turner & Townsend is leading on the project as the GLA’s main partner.
Support available includes workshops and webinars and tailored one-to-one sessions.
Housing associations and councils are currently putting together plans to improve the energy efficiency of their homes as the UK strives towards hitting next zero carbon by 2050. Inside Housing research has suggested the work will cost £104bn.
Shirley Rodrigues, deputy London mayor for environment and energy, said: “The Social Housing Retrofit Accelerator builds on the expertise we’ve developed in London to tackle the challenge of transforming our buildings for a zero-carbon future.
“It will provide nationwide support to help social housing providers across England gain access to funding for major retrofit projects.
“We’re proud to collaborate with government to scale up this necessary work and help increase the quality and speed of retrofit projects.
“Together we’re enabling social housing providers to cut carbon emissions and reduce heating costs for thousands of homes, tackling the climate emergency and the growing issue of fuel poverty.”
That scheme was also designed and established by the GLA in partnership with Turner & Townsend and is hoped to help deliver £10bn worth of decarbonisation works.
The GLA’s new programmes are intended to build on its £3.6m Retrofit Accelerator, also led by Turner & Townsend.
Richard McWilliams, director of sustainability at Turner & Townsend, said: “The Social Housing Retrofit Accelerator combines a clear government commitment to long-term funding with free access to the sector-leading expertise.
“In helping social housing providers future-proof their housing portfolios and accelerate the decarbonisation of the UK’s homes, it is a critical programme with an important role to play in meeting net zero targets.
“Our specialist team is ready to help overcome the barriers many housing providers have experienced in the past and to support the transformation of ageing housing into comfortable, energy-efficient homes that are fit for the future.”
Ahead of his re-election in May, Mr Khan vowed to make London carbon neutral by 2030.
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