UK MPs Urge the Government to Renew the Scrapped GHG Scheme

Summary

  • The Environmental Audit Committee has written to the UK business secretary calling for clarity on overhauling and extending the GHG scheme, claiming it was poorly implemented.
  • The scheme allowed people to apply for up to £5,000 grant for introducing green renovations.
  • It was first announced last summer and then relaunched in September 2020.

British members of parliament have asked the Boris Johnson government to renew the Green Homes Grant scheme, which was scrapped last month for not getting properly implemented in its first attempt.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak had launched the Green Homes Grants (GHG) scheme in his summer statement last year. The scheme allowed people to apply for up to £5,000 government grant for funding green renovations such as installing eco-friendly boilers, insulations, and other energy efficiency improvements for their homes.

However, the scheme reached merely a fraction of homes it had promised to improve, some 10 per cent of the 600,000 homes, and was therefore scrapped in March this year.

Also Read: Budget 2021: What did Rishi Sunak miss out?

The EAC’s submission

EAC (the Environmental Audit Committee) had recently written to Kwasi Kwarteng, the business secretary asking for clarity for homeowners as well as for contractors. In a recent report, the EAC has asked the government to overhaul and extend the grant. The committee has urged that the grant should not be wound down or scrapped. EAC chairman and MP Philip Dunne said that while the grant was a good initiative, it was poorly implemented.

Lower carbon emissions

Dunne said that it was not wise to abandon a crucial decarbonisation scheme in a year in which the UK aims to display its climate leadership. Further, lowering the UK homes carbon emissions would form an important part of attaining the government's net zero target by the year 2050.

The EAC committee noted that there was a dire need to improve the energy efficiency of British homes.

According to the latest statistics, UK homes contribute to 20 per cent of the nation’s total greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, 19 million homes have failed to achieve an EPC rating of C or more.

Scrapping the scheme

The news that the GHG scheme to insulate houses was axed was announced on 28 March.  It said that the scheme was being stopped, and the £300 million earlier allocated for the scheme would be diverted to a separate insulation fund run by councils. That separate fund was targeted at lower income households.

The GHG scheme later relaunched in September 2020 and extended in November for another year until the end of March 2022. The government has pointed that many people out of fear of catching Covid-19 infection did not went for the scheme, they were afraid that if they allowed contractors to enter their homes they will get infected.

Also Read: Renew, Kier, Keller Shares Surge After the Announcement of Green Homes Grant

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