A consortium of local councils led by Blackpool Council are set to receive a share of £124 million in grants offered to fund 81 projects across 200 local authorities.
The £500 million Green Homes Grant Local Authority Delivery scheme aims to raise the energy efficiency of around 50,000 low-income households living in homes with low EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) ratings including homes off the gas grid.
It will deliver progress towards reducing fuel poverty, phasing out high carbon fossil fuel heating and the UK's commitment to net zero by 2050.
Also, critically this scheme forms part of the Government’s package of post COVID-19 economic stimulus measures, supporting around 16,000 jobs between 20/21 and 21/22.
To drive these outcomes, funding is being allocated to Local Authorities and Local Energy Hubs, which will work through partners to deliver on eligible measures under the scheme, such as wall, loft, and underfloor insulation, as well as low carbon technologies. The scheme’s focus is on owner occupiers and those in the private and social rented sector with a household income of under £30,000.
The scheme is being implemented over 3 phases:
- For Phase 1A, last October the government has allocated grants totalling over £74 million for 55 projects which aim to upgrade the energy efficiency of around 10,000 low- income households in over 100 Local Authorities across all areas in England by March 2021.
- For Phase 1B, announced this week, the government has offered grants of over £124 million for 81 projects in over 200 Local Authorities in England for delivery by September 2021. This followed a competitive bidding process which ran between October and December 2020. These 81 projects aim to upgrade around 15,000 homes.
- For Phase 2, we have now allocated £300 million to the five Local Energy Hubs, who will work with the Local Authorities in their region to deliver energy efficiency upgrades to around 30,000 homes across England by December 2021.
The Green Homes Grant Local Authority Delivery scheme forms part of a wider plan to upgrade the energy efficiency of the nation’s buildings and while providing an economic stimulus to the economy. Alongside the Green Homes Grant Voucher scheme, many Local Authorities are also benefiting from the other stimulus schemes, including:
- The £1 billion Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which provides grants for public sector bodies to fund energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation measures. This scheme is supported by the Public Sector Low Carbon Skills Fund, which provides funding for developing bids and delivering projects. Applications to both the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme and the Public Sector Low Carbon Skills Fund were far in excess of the funding available. The applications window closed on 11 January 2021 and applications are being assessed.
- Over £110 million is also being invested in the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, including the associated Demonstrator, to continue upgrading the least efficient social housing, delivering warm homes, reducing carbon emissions and bills, and tackling fuel poverty. £50 million of this investment has already been awarded to projects across the UK as part of the Demonstrator – successful projects will be announced in February and are due to deliver by December 2021.
Together, these schemes will provide vital upgrades to our housing stock, support our pathway to net zero and increase demand for insulation and low-carbon heating measures across the country, giving the sector confidence to recruit, train and support green jobs.