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The Green Deal

UK Government's Green DealThe UK Government's 'Green Deal' is the flagship policy of an effort to be the greenest government ever. Set originally for release in September 2012, it is now scheduled to be brought into effect in late 2012. There is a lot riding on its effectiveness, so let's analyse how it works and promotes renewable energy such as solar power.

The basic premise of the Green Deal is that is that energy efficiency measures should be affordable and simple for your average domestic property owner to organise. A financial mechanism at the heart of the Green Deal eliminates the need for an upfront purchase of efficiency upgrades, instead allowing the subsequent savings to be used to cover their costs.

Solar Power is of vital importance to us here at Solar Selections, but that does not mean it is the be all and end all of renewable energy or protecting and enhancing our planets atmosphere and environment and addressing climate change. The Green Deal is set to be a major player in the domestic property market turning towards renewable energy and we will be able to provide not only our usually excellent solar power brokering service to customers but Green Deal assistance and guidance as well as it is implemented throughout the UK.

As such; the primary goals of the Green Deal are:

  • 1. To provide a consultation and advice service for people considering clean energy and sustainability upgrades for their properties.
  • 2. Establish a finance system that allows approved energy saving and green technology measures to be purchased for no upfront cost to the homeowner.
  • 4. Ensure that all approved measures are provided and installed to a high quality standard.
  • 5. To allow participant homeowners to make repayments through their energy bills.
  • 6. To champion the choice of Green Deal service providers and suppliers to homeowners at all times.

As can be seen, it's really about promoting the uptake of renewable energy such as solar power and energy efficiency such as insulation to reduce carbon emissions, tackle climate change and waste at a grassroots, domestic property level.

UK Green Deal

The Golden Rule

How this is all funded is through what the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) have termed 'The Golden Rule'. Funders participating in the Green Deal scheme rely upon 'The Golden Rule' to ensure they see an adequate return from their investment in the scheme - so it is of vital important that this aspect works effectively.

The Golden Rule is that a defined 'standard property' applicable for the scheme will consume energy within an expected pre-determined spectrum. If such a property invests in approved Green Deal energy efficiency upgrades, the measures will cost less than the direct savings made over the upgrades lifetime. Thus, the investor gains a return on their participation by receiving a set allocation of the benefits whilst the homeowner receives a free and long-term reduction on their properties energy usage and costs.

The Green Deal Assessment

The first step for any homeowner considering the Green Deal is the important Green Deal Assessment; a DECC authorised and trained Green Deal Assessor analysing a properties energy usage and suitability for energy efficiency upgrades in line with The Golden Rule. The assessment involves two separate studies of both the properties average usage and the inhabitants patterns of energy use. It would involve aspects such as when water heating is taking place and if the roof is suitable for a solar power installation.

With the information and background gathered during the Green Deal Assessment, the property can be established as suitable or unsuitable for participation. A report with recommendations will then be generated and supplied to the homeowner.

Green Deal Timeline

Following the Green Deal Assessment and approval from the associated approved finance, the funds will be allocated to the homeowner who can then employ any and all of the suggested energy efficiency upgrades detailed in their Green Deal Assessment Report. The measures are then installed and paid for through the energy savings being made and always in line with the Golden Rule.

Approved Measures

There are many types of pre-approved Green Deal energy efficiency upgrades; all specific to the outcome of the Green Deal Assessment, the property and effective measures combating climate change. Some of the major implementations already being highlighted include:

  • Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditions - such as condensing boilers, heating controls, under floor heating, mechanical ventilation.
  • Building Fabric -  insulation in cavity walls, lofts, heating systems, under floor and external wall, draft proofing and double glazing.
  • Lighting - LED upgrades, lighting management and monitoring systems.
  • Water Heating - such as water efficient faucet and shower heads.
  • Microgeneration - including solar power installations, Biomass boilers, solar thermal upgrades, ground and air source heat pumps and other renewable energy.

Climate change must be addresses through a diverse approach and that is what the Green Deal aims to do.

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