The Green Deal: slowly rolling out…

In Part II of this guest blog, David Thomas from The Eco Experts looks at the roles and responsibilities of those providing services in the Green Deal.

Who’s involved in The Green Deal?

Who pays for improvements, who borrows the money, and what are the big companies’ motivations for getting involved? Below is a description of everyone involved in the Green Deal chain, who they pay and how they profit.

The Green Deal Provider

The Green Deal Provider provides assessment and accredited installers. The assessors calculate where potential energy savings can be made, and suggest which improvement measures to install, based purely on cost-efficient basis.

The assessor bears in mind the current behaviour and requirements of the customer, so that the repayment plan is grounded in truth rather than assumption of their energy consumption. And of course, they arrange for the energy efficient measures to be installed by an accredited installer.

Receives:

–          Loans from Green Deal Finance Company.

–          Repayments from The Energy Companies, in small batches that they then use to pay back their own Green Deal Finance Company loan.

Pays:

–          The Installer.

–          Green Deal Finance Company.

Eg’s: Carillion, Grafton Group, E.ON (some Energy Companies will set up as Green Deal Providers).

The Green Deal Installer

The Green Deal Installer is the one who actually carries out the improvement work, based on the impartial assessment arranged by The Green Deal Provider.

According to many it’s at Installer level that the Green Deal will flourish or falter: small businesses will be the agents of change across the country. At this level work and new jobs will be generated, and the healthy competition will hopefully breathe life into the industry.

Receives:

–          Payment from Green Deal Providers for installation work.

Pays:

–          Their own costs, which may include Green Deal Installer training, and whatever business investment they might need.

Eg: A local installer.

The Customer

The Customer either lives in or owns the property. Whoever pays the energy bill also pays the repayments. If they move house they leave the Green Deal behind: the property’s energy efficiency improvements and the debt. Green Deals are agreed per household, not per person.

Receives:

–          Up to £10k in energy efficiency improvements at no upfront cost.

Pays:

–          The cost in small instalments that should always be less than the energy savings they’re making.

Eg: you and me.

The Energy Company

The Energy Company provides power to the customers’ homes, and isn’t involved in the assessment or installation works unless their contractors are involved.

Receives:

–          The customer’s repayments, which they pass onto the Green Deal Provider, to pay their own loan to the Green Deal Finance Company.

Pays:

–          As part of the ECO, the Energy Company must put contribute funds to the Green Deal Finance Company, which goes towards paying Green Deal Installers for free improvements to low-income homes.

Eg: E.ON, British Gas.

The Eco Experts’ concluding thoughts:

The devil is in the details, and the key detail to remember is: The Green Deal is not Government subsidised, it’s market driven. It’s the industry that is expected to rear the Green Deal.

At a recent event I interviewed Chris Broadbent, Director of Training at BRE. BRE is one of the major training providers in the UK and will be instrumental in producing Green Deal accredited installers.

Chris said that on paper the Green Deal will transform the nation, keeping warmth in homes and cash in pockets. BUT he said in order for the scheme to succeed it had to capture the public’s imagination. That’s where private companies come in.

There’s a great deal of activity inside the industry that customers will not be aware of. For example, I’ve spoken to training academies who are forming alliances to meet demand and give installers the training and business grounding to make something of the Green Deal. These stories are heartening because of the hard work and passion that is going in. Installers are relying on the Green Deal for their livelihoods, to put food on their table.

Prediction:

With enough able minds willing the initiative to work, it will work. At the time of writing this article, the Government response to consultation is ongoing. The bureaucracy is frustrating for the industry, which just wants to get on with it. The pencilled-in launch date is October 1st, but a gradual roll-out is expected.