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But Green energy retrofit could cost “up to £38,000” a house

Submitted by: MikeC (Admin) on 09-Dec-09 04:46:53 PM

“All I have to do is use immersion heaters for my hot water system, put space heaters in my rooms and cook with electricity and my home has zero emissions. That might cost me £2,500.”

So said Lord Dixon Smith (Conservative) yesterday in his speech to the House of Lords on the subject of Climate Change: Carbon Budgets.

He went on to qualify the above, saying:

Of course, that depends on my electricity supplier being emissions free, but we will have to make the electricity supply industry emissions free anyway.

Get on with it

There’s been a truckload of news in the last few days (too much to report on but I'll try and catch up) but here’s more of what our Lord said which I found interesting in light of proposals from both political parties for a Pay As You Save scheme.

“The Government's new policy framework sets out in the heat and energy-saving strategy three pillars for a new approach: a whole house approach; a neighbourhood approach; and new funding mechanisms. A retrofit programme aimed at improving all properties in England to EPC bands B and C, which, currently, only 6 per cent of properties achieve, would cost an average of about £7,000 a house, according to the progress report. Fuel bills per household would be reduced by an average of 46 per cent. To my mind, that is a win-win. You do not muck around. If you can achieve those sort of savings in emissions and in the cost of running a household, you get on with it.

“The problem is that that is the average house. The report notes that a housing association based in Petersfield, the Drum Housing Association, was asked to do a pilot study on the less efficient houses, and found that that could work out at up to £38,000 a house. Of course, that is with all the bells and whistles. That is adding solar heating, PV and the like. I would simply say: stick to what will give you the quickest return and get on with it. Do the whole house audits, which will not cost a lot. Find the houses in which insulation will show the greatest return, and get on with it. At the moment, 40 per cent of the input is restricted to priority households: those on benefit or aged over 70. There is an economic case for widening that rapidly.”

Lord Dixon Smith also mentions the RICS' £17,000 cost estimate to "produce a top-quality energy-efficient house" on the average home.

More interesting musings from our Lords yesterday: Climate Change: Carbon Budgets (it’s quite long).

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