Only 20,000 vouchers towards the cost of installing energy efficiency improvements have so far been issued under the Green Homes Grant (GHG), according to a minister from BEIS.
On 8 February, the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) said that BEIS Minister, Lord Callanan, revealed the figures when responding to concerns it had raised on the operation of the Green Homes Grant. Assuming this current rate were to continue, it noted it would take over 10 years to reach the government’s goal of issuing vouchers to 600,000 households.
Having conducted an online survey on the GHG in November, the EAC found a lack of accredited engineers registered with the government endorsed quality scheme for installers, TrustMark, was a reason consumers had been unable to make upgrades as should have been enabled. An evidence session also carried out in November saw the EAC hear 1,200 companies had been registered with TrustMark, with Callanan revealing this had only increased to 1,300 several months on. It is hoped that an extension of the scheme to March 2022 will give the industry greater confidence to hire certified installers.
EAC Chairman, Philip Dunne said: “This scheme has good potential. But it needs a radical overhaul now the scheme has been extended. It must streamline the application process by removing unnecessary bureaucracy and must make sure the supply of skills meets the demand that 600,000 vouchers, and a further boost by the Chancellor in the March Budget, would drive. By doing so, it could make large strides towards meeting other Government commitments, such as installing 600,000 heat pumps every year by 2028.”