You may have heard on the news about Green Deal – a new scheme for funding a wide range of energy efficiency and renewable energy measures in order to encourage take up of these measures across the UK. Alongside the Green Deal there is the Energy Company Obligation, (ECO), which will be providing grant funding where market-driven measures won’t easily work.

Green Deal
The government launched the Green Deal in October 2012, and launched it again on Monday of this week as the finance for this scheme is now officially available. The Green Deal is a loan for one or many measures where the cost of the loan repayment is LESS THAN the amount of money saved on the energy bills, so not only is there no up front cost, there should be no ongoing costs. Furthermore, this loan is linked to the property not the person, so when someone sells their home, the new owner will take on the residue of the loan as they will also be receiving the benefits of the measures installed.

The process for arranging a Green Deal loan is new, and doubtless there will be a few teething problems. It starts with arranging for a Green Deal Assessment, which is carried out by either a Greed Deal Assessor or by a chartered surveyor or by someone whose assessment is reviewed and signed off by a chartered surveyor. This assessment looks at the energy demand of the property, and at the heating system, and at how the property is used. All properties currently have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) which was produced by a Domestic Energy Assessor (DEA). A Green Deal Assessment is mostly the same but with some extra bits tagged on. To help provide customer confidence, Green Deal Assessors must be accredited. The report produced as a result of the assessment will identify a range of possible measures that could help improve the energy efficiency of the property and/or could provide renewable energy generation. The sum of money saved from implementing all of these measures over their individual lifetimes must work out less than the loan repayments for them to be eligible for the Green Deal loan.

The customer can take the Green Deal Assessment Report and go to ANY Green Deal Provider in order to continue. It is a bit like taking your prescription from your optician to any store to buy frames/lenses.
A Green Deal Provider will look at the Green Deal Assessment Report and discuss with the customer what their options are. The customer may not want to progress all of it or may also want extra bits done that wouldn’t be covered by the Green Deal. The Green Deal Provider will have access to a source of Green Deal funding, although approval is subject to a credit check. A Green Deal Plan for implementing one or a number of measures is then developed and agreed by both parties with a suitable cooling off period.

The Green Deal Provider will arrange for the measures to be installed. Once the installation is complete, then the loan repayments will be added to the electricity bill for the customer. (The reason it is added to the electricity bill is that not everyone is on gas.)

More information on the Green Deal can be found on the DEAC website including a PDF we have produced:

To find a Green Deal Assessor or a Green Deal Provider near you, have a look at:

ECO grant funding replaces the old CERT grants, and is supposed to be available now, but some of the details may still require clarification by Ofgem. Ofgem has provided each of the big energy suppliers with targets to reach for funding energy efficiency projects for vulnerable people, and for people in particular areas, and for people with particularly hard to treat homes. The funding can be applied for directly to the supplier, through a broker, or for Green Deal Providers, through a new online auctioning system.

ECO is divided into 3 funding streams:

1. Carbon Saving Communities Obligation (CSCO)
This provides insulation measures to households in specified areas of low income. It also makes sure that 15% of each supplier’s obligation is used to upgrade more hard-to-reach low-income households in rural areas.

2. Home Heating Cost Reduction Obligation (HHCRO – formerly Affordable Warmth Obligation)
This provides heating and insulation measures to consumers living in private tenure properties that receive particular means-tested benefits. This obligation supports low-income consumers that are vulnerable to the impact of living in cold homes, including the elderly, disabled and families.

3. Carbon Emissions Reduction Obligation (CERO – formerly Carbon Saving Obligation)
This covers the installation of measures like solid wall and hard-to-treat cavity wall insulation, which ordinarily can’t be financed solely through the Green Deal.

The official source of advice on the Green Deal and ECO is the Energy Savings Trust at:

For Dorset advice on Green Deal, ECO and other local grants, contact myself or my colleagues at DEAC on 0800 975 0166 or at: