The UK has an ambitious target to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. We welcome an expansion to the UK Government’s green campaign to help people save energy through short and long-term measures.
The UK Government has recently announced the ECO+ Scheme, aimed at promoting energy efficiency in homes by helping people insulate their homes and reduce energy bills. It targets low-income households and those living in the least energy-efficient homes in lower council tax bands. The initiative will run from April 2023 to March 2026 and has £1 billion in funding. The scheme’s cost will be included in the Energy Price Guarantee during the first year.
ECO+ is a complementary scheme to the existing ECO4 and £6.6 Billion ‘Help to Heat’ schemes, which have helped millions of households become energy efficient. The scheme aims for larger energy suppliers across Great Britain to provide insulation grants to their customers to reduce home heating costs.
Some key points from the scheme are:
Around 80% of the funding will be made available for those households who are in some of the least energy-efficient homes in the country – that is, those with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D or below – and in the lower Council Tax bands (A-D).
Around 20% of the fund will be allocated to low-income and vulnerable households, including those on means-tested benefits or in fuel poverty.
Eligible households that have not received any other form of funding from the UK Government will be eligible for the grant. The scheme will provide mainly low-cost insulation, such as loft insulation and cavity wall insulation.
Additionally, an £18 million public information campaign will offer technical tips and advice to help people cut their energy usage and bills: The campaign will promote recommended actions such as reducing boiler temperature, turning down radiators in empty rooms and draft-proofing windows and doors.
The UK Government has set an ambitious target to have all homes with an EPC rating of C or above by 2035 – aligning with the Net Zero initiative. Business and Energy Secretary Grant Shapps said that the ECO+ Scheme will enable thousands more households to insulate their homes and save money, by working with energy suppliers to provide some of the scheme’s benefits earlier in 2023 and, if the measures under the scheme are applied, ECO+ is expected to save hundreds of thousands more households around £310 on their energy bills.