A Greener Deal from Across the Pond
From Sep 2010 to Apr 2011, CEE’s residential program staff had the pleasure of working with Emma Kovaleski. She had previously managed programs at Yorkshire Energy Services in Huddersfield, UK, where she returned. Thanks to Emma, it is our delight to welcome a guest blog from Alex Krzesinski, Marketing Executive at Yorkshire Energy Services, who tells us about the new residential program introduced in the UK called Green Deal.
The UK’s Government has released its most ambitious conservation initiative to date, aiming to revolutionise energy efficiency standards for both homes and businesses.
Representatives of the award winning community interest company, Yorkshire Energy Services, explain how Green Deal intends to transform the UK’s sustainable energy industry for the better.
Green Deal in practise
Green Deal is an innovative programme set to reduce or eradicate the upfront costs of energy saving products and services. Homeowners and businesses can improve the efficiency of their properties with a broad range of installations without straining their financial resources.
The scheme offers a finance mechanism, where customers can access a loan to pay for energy efficiency improvements such as insulation, heating or renewable technologies. Repayments are then split into instalments and tied to the property’s electricity meter.
What makes Green Deal different from other finance programmes is that repayments are set at a lower rate than the money saved on fuel bills through the related products. Therefore customers will always be financially better off for taking part in Green Deal, reduce their fuel bills and reap the benefits of a warmer and more efficient property.
Green Deal Provider
Footing the initial bill for Green Deal installations is a variety of private sector companies who have been uniquely selected by the Government. These companies are called Green Deal Providers and they will play a pivotal role in the success of the scheme.
A Green Deal Provider not only pays for installations to go ahead, but manages the finance connected to each property. Green Deal products are linked to the building not the customer, so even if the original occupant moves, the next occupant will inherit the loan and the related energy savings. Providers will oversee this transaction and continue the relationship with the
property’s new occupants.
To initiate the Green Deal process, participating customers must get their properties assessed by an independent Green Deal Advisor. Advisors examine each property and produce a plan of action which includes an Occupancy Assessment and an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The plan also identifies all the realistic energy saving services available for each property and the level of finance required to pay for each installation.
Customers can then make an informed choice on which services they prefer and find a Green Deal Provider to facilitate the work.
Strengthening local economies through small installer networks
One pioneer Green Deal Provider is Yorkshire Energy Services, a national community interest company that has always been at the forefront of domestic efficiency initiatives in the UK. The company was awarded pioneer Provider status by the UK Government in April 2012 and is currently completing its Green Deal accreditation.
Yorkshire Energy Services works in partnership with a network of small to medium sized installer organisations. The company was selected as a Provider due to its commitment to representing smaller businesses and supporting local and regional supply chains.
The company was also chosen as one of six Green Deal Skills Exemplars and has been working with the UK’s Green Deal Skills Alliance to advocate training routes for installers and advisors wishing to take part in the scheme.
In the run up to Green Deal, Yorkshire Energy Services launched a subsidiary company, YES Projects to facilitate a one stop shop for all Green Deal services. YES Projects is currently in discussions with Local Authorities and Housing Associations to instigate area based Green Deal programmes fulfilled by small to medium installer organisations.
Green Deal is on track to change the face of Britain’s sustainable energy industry and showcase the UK’s commitment to tackling Climate Change throughout the world. Yorkshire Energy Services, like so many other organisations are hopeful that this innovative scheme will overhaul the country’s fuel poverty problems and drive communities towards a low carbon future.
For more information about Green Deal and YES projects, visit the Yorkshire Energy Services website.
Financing as Follow-Through
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