This month the government have introduced ECO Funding. ECO stands for “Energy Company Obligation”. It is similar to the current CERT scheme, which will eventually be phased out. Or in the words of our Sales & Marketing Director Barney — ECO is like CERT, but on steroids!
What does this mean for you?
At the moment CERT funding can pay for simple insulation products, like cavity wall and loft insulation. This will remain largely unchanged when ECO takes over. These products will be provided for free to certain lower income households. Those not on a low income or benefits will still get their insulation at no cost using a combination of ECO funding and Green Deal funding.
The big news however is that ECO will pay for a lot more high-value insulation products, such as External Wall Insulation (EWI). It is expected that the qualifying criteria for free EWI will be loosened up, making it available to thousands of more people. The big six energy providers are reportedly planning on spending 1.3 billion on such products throughout the next year. There will also be funding available for boiler replacements for certain customers.
How ECO funding works
Much in the same way as CERT, the funding is provided by the ‘big six’ – British Gas, EDF, E.ON, Npower, Scottish Power and SSE. As before, these companies have an obligation to help people like you and I reduce our carbon footprints and cut our energy bills. And as before, if they don’t reach their targets, they will be heavily fined.
ECO does work a little differently in that it’s split into two parts; Carbon Saving ECO and Affordable Warmth ECO.
Carbon Saving Eco is aimed primarily at ‘hard to treat’ properties where significant carbon savings can be made, such as houses with solid walls. It wouldn’t be possible to fund these types of project with Green Deal funding alone, so they will be funded by a mixture of ECO and Green Deal.
Affordable Warmth ECO is aimed at low-income or vulnerable households – so called ‘priority customers’. It will pay for simple insulation measures (cavity & loft) and in some cases it will pay for a shiny new boiler!
The details still need to be firmed up by the government, but it looks like you can still claim your free insulation for a little bit longer.