Policy & Research Public Buildings Refurb & Retrofit

Govt reveals £3bn green investment package

Funding for retrofit of public buildings and social housing plus grants for homeowners.

Funding for retrofit of public buildings and social housing plus grants for homeowners.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced that £3bn will be earmarked for energy efficiency and green skills in his Summer Economic Update on 8 July.

The government will fund £1bn for retrofitting schools, hospitals and other public buildings, as well as social housing, with energy efficient measures. It will also invest in trialling heat pumps and other technology for the least energy efficient social rented homes.  

The government will also set aside £2bn for the Green Homes Grant incentive. From September households can receive vouchers worth £5,000 for cavity wall or floor insulation, with £10,000 available for the poorest households. The government believes the initiative could create up to 10,000 jobs.

Last month, the Climate Change Committee (CCC) called on the government to have a more ambitious low carbon building policy, placing low carbon retrofit at centre stage. It said the government’s manifesto commitment of £9bn for energy efficiency over the next decade was not enough to match the size of the challenge.

Russel Smith, managing director of Parity Projects and director of the Retrofit Works co-operative, echoes the CCC, believing the £9bn manifesto commitment will not meet the government’s own commitments.

He tweeted: “Simply not enough. The multiple benefits of domestic retrofit show that this is a perfect stimulus vehicle as well as a necessary route to NetZero. If we don’t create a proper national retrofit programme, we will never reach zero CO2 as a country.” 

Featured image credit:

Marco Verch. Thermal imaging of a building (CC By 2.0)

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