Tony Lloyd MP is calling on the Government to radically change the Green Homes Grant, a vital measure in making our homes fit for the challenge of climate change.
Homeowners or residential landlords can apply for a Green Homes Grant voucher towards the cost of installing energy efficient improvements to homes. Improvements could include insulating your home to reduce your energy use, or installing low-carbon heating to lower the amount of carbon dioxide your home produces.
Tony Lloyd said, ‘The government must commit to a Green Jobs Guarantee, and to reverse the current tax incentive which operates in favour of new build and against retrofitting older homes and to ensure installers are urgently paid for the work they have carried out.
‘The Green Homes Grant is in need of fundamental reform.
‘A huge majority of its £1.5bn budget for this year is unspent, and the Government has said it will pocket that money rather than rolling it over to next year’s £320m fund.
‘Householders have been unable to get quotes from registered contractors, and delays in issuing vouchers have led to financial difficulties and redundancies for companies as delays in payment are threatening their business’s viability.
‘The Conservatives promised £9.2bn for energy efficiency in their manifesto. In the year that the UK is hosting COP26 – the most important climate negotiations since the Paris Agreement – the Government must not turn its back on that promise and our ambitious climate targets.
‘The Green Homes Grant is not only a lifeline for those experiencing fuel poverty, but it is also vital to bring all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
‘The current VAT system favours operates in favour of new builds, but retrofitting homes is largely ignored. Retrofitting homes is one of the easiest steps we can take now to cut emissions, and the Government has got to look at this again.’
The Environmental Audit Committee’s Growing Back Better report, and the Committee’s survey, showed that many homeowners struggled to find registered contractors and that 86 per cent had a poor experience with the application process.
Tony Lloyd is one of 23 cross-party Members of Parliament to co-sign an Early Day Motion (EDM) calling for reform of the Green Homes Grant.
The EDM states ‘that as of 8 February 2021 just 22,165 vouchers had been issued to customers despite enormous demand,’ calling on the Government ‘to work with stakeholders to improve the Green Homes Grant, ensure installers are urgently paid for delivered work, strip US consultancy ICF of their contract, and commit to a Green Jobs Guarantee including long-term funding for an ambitious multi-year investment in home retrofits; and urges the Government to reverse the current tax incentive which operates in favour of new build and against retrofit.’
• The full text of the EDM, and the list of MPs who have signed the Parliamentary motion, can be viewed here: https://edm.parliament.uk/early-day-motion/58152/the-green-homes-grant