3 and half more years of installing energy efficiency measures in the wrong homes?
Ofgem are the regulator for the Governments flagship energy efficiency policy called the Energy Companies Obligation (ECO) and they have consulted on tweaks to the scoring mechanism called ‘deemed scores’ for the new ECO3 due to be launched in October.
The ECO3 Policy which was consulted on a few weeks ago states that it is now to be solely focussed on fighting fuel poverty, aligning it to the Governments strategy to improve all fuel poor homes to at least ‘C rating on their EPCs.You can take a look at our response to this consultation here.
Deemed scores have always been averages of averages, the numbers are now being tweaked to get to a number that is acceptable to the Industry. Elmhurst has advocated that they can and should be used to trade the measures within the ECO framework, but they are not linked to the EPC rating of the home. The only option available without wholesale change is to give an uplift to the poorest energy inefficient homes. This at least tries to ensure that measures are installed in the worst homes first rather than wasted in already energy efficient homes.
Elmhurst suggest that an uplift MUST be placed on all measures where the home is E, F or G rated to start with. This is in an effort to encourage the Industry to install measures in these homes.
Stuart Fairlie – Technical Director “As we previously responded to the BEIS consultation, ECO is supposed to be about taking people out of fuel poverty and installing the right energy efficiency measures for the occupants benefit. What is disappointing is that the numbers appear to be being tweaked to further simplify an already overly simple method of ascertaining the ‘score’ for any particular measure.
There is no incentive to install the measures in the coldest most inefficient homes. In order to salvage any hope within this policy, Elmhurst call for an inflator to be added, to incentivise the limited funds to be at least spent on those homes most in need.
Utility companies find the policy bureaucratic, the installers find it a massively overly complex set of rules, and will ultimately only ever install in homes where there is a profit. The actual families are the last priority! This is a top down policy which does not work. It needs to put the families at the start and in order to get what they need for their home. This is what EPCs identify.
The shame is that the policy will run for another 3 and half years and measure success solely on the number of installs. Only when Government want to know how the country is doing on its path to energy efficient homes in accordance with their own Clean Growth Strategy will they then reflect and wish they had put the measures in old inefficient homes rather than already efficient ones.”
Elmhurst Final Response to the ECO3 Consultation:
Ofgem: Deemed Scores Consultation: