As regular blog readers will know I sit in the new Housing Committee....we have been delighted to hear that the winners of the latest applications for funding for renewable energy grants have been announced by the Government - and Stroud District Council is leading the whole of the UK with an award based on installing 400 air source heat pumps into its council homes.
The grant is the largest award made under this national scheme and is bigger than the award made to the whole of Scotland. It is the largest single installation programme under the scheme.
Our energy bills are continuing to rise - the news is great that 400 homes will have more energy efficient green heating. As I noted in the Energy Strategy that I initiated for the Council several years ago, a third of our 5,200 homes are off the mains gas supply so our tenants have to use expensive oil or solid fuel for heating. These air source heat pumps will be cheaper and reduce the risk from fuel poverty.
We should not forget this comes on top of £12m SDC are putting into renewables and energy efficiency measures....
Here's a bit from the Council's press release:
The council's success accounted for more than a quarter of the total awards, and for the South West region alone, made up over 80 per cent of allocations. The bids were assessed by the Department of Energy and Climate Change based on value for money, fuel to be replaced, energy efficiency and plans to work with local communities. The winning projects were those that offered the best value for money and mix of renewable technologies to be installed.
Additionally, in order to make council properties more efficient and to help tenants reduce their fuel bills the council has committed over ?12 Million over the next few years to install renewable energy products. This will make their homes more efficient and lead to a reduction in their fuel bills in a programme to combat fuel poverty and use green renewable energy. As part of this work Stroud District Council has already created a 'show home' in Kings Stanley. It has been specifically fitted out to demonstrate to the council's tenants the technology that will be fitted into their homes and show them the real positive difference these improvements can make. It is one of the first in the country to achieve the highest possible energy efficiency rating of A.