Jane Lumb, head of energy and sustainability policy at Nottingham City Council, discusses a new housing procurement approach being trialled in the region to radically improve the energy efficiency of older homes.
There is little doubt that many of Britain’s homes need to improve their energy efficiency. A 2015 study by the Association for the Conservation of Energy found that the UK has among the highest rates of fuel poverty and one of the most energy-inefficient housing stocks in Europe. Poorly heated homes have a knock-on impact on health outcomes, and all that wasted energy impacts on our climate change ambitions.
Local authorities have one of the biggest roles to play in helping people save energy and live in homes that they can afford to heat. Having an in-depth understanding of our neighbourhoods, residents and housing stock, we can target schemes which maximise the impact on fuel poverty and carbon emissions.
To reduce the cost of energy bills, Nottingham City Council launched the not-for-profit Robin Hood Energy company, but we also need to improve the energy efficiency of our homes. Under our Greener HousiNG scheme, we have delivered external wall insulation to over 6,000 social and private homes and installed solar renewable energy (PV) systems in over 4,000 of our social homes.
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This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 646511