GGF responds to Green Deal Consultation
The Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF) has responded to the recent consultation into Green Deal reform, calling for greater flexibility for consumers and installers to help simplify and improve the scheme for the future.
The GGF emphasised that the disappointing number of glazing installers involved in Green Deal was a consequence of a costly and resource intensive accreditation process. Further, the response stressed that the level of finance available to consumers under the scheme was often not enough to purchase glazing products in tandem with other measures. The GGF pointed out that for some energy efficiency measures, the Golden Rule in its current form is not a workable framework for promoting a ‘Whole House Approach’ to energy efficiency.
With the new Each Home Counts (EHC) framework also expected next year, the GGF recommended that installers should be exempt from the need for formal Green Deal status, if they can prove membership of a recognised certification scheme, which may include approved status under EHC or a UKAS accredited certification scheme.
The GGF underlined that the introduction of these reforms would allow installers to avoid additional red tape, reduce confusion amongst consumers and support the Government’s objective to simplify the Green Deal, whilst continuing to support the take up of more energy efficient home improvements.
In addition, the GGF also called for better consumer access to the latest and most effective energy efficient measures, which will require regular reviews of accredited measures under the Green Deal. This would include higher standards of glazing (including triple glazing), and introducing greater transparency between the roles of Green Deal assessors and providers; to ensure greater consumer confidence about the impartiality of the advice they are given.
GGF Director of Home Improvement Russell Day commented:
“The plans to simplify the framework are a welcome first step to improving Green Deal. Like many, the GGF was disappointed the Green Deal did not materialise into the scheme that was first hoped.
“Feedback from our members has shown that the complexity in gaining Green Deal accreditation dissuaded many installers from registering with the scheme and flaws within the Golden Rule discouraged many consumers from installing replacement windows or glazing using Green Deal Finance.
“Following the consultation, we urge the Government to ensure that Each Home Counts creates a joint framework where Green Deal accreditation leads to Each Home Counts accreditation and vice-versa to lessen the burden on firms wishing to work under Green Deal. To support the consumer, the Government should look to increase the amount they can borrow.”