Nick Clegg announces plan for 'new Green Deal'

Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has announced plans a new Green Deal which he says is part of the coalition's 'quiet green revolution' to create jobs and protect the environment.

Mr Clegg, speaking in South Tyneside yesterday (August 19), said the Green Deal will combine growth in the economy with a greener and more efficient way of using energy.

He wants to reduce energy demand and carbon emissions while making homes warmer, saving consumers money and stimulating green recovery in jobs.

He said: "I want to focus on plans for a Green Deal to combine growth in the economy with a greener and more efficient way of using energy.

"Green Deal Finance will allow householders to make their homes more energy efficient, saving on their bills, without the need for them to provide up-front finance.

"Homes account for a quarter of all emissions in the UK, and this is no longer a problem we can ignore. With some of the oldest housing stock in Europe we also face a huge challenge."

According to Mr Clegg up to 14 million homes could benefit from the Green Deal through insulation.

Payments will be collected through energy bills and the most energy inefficient homes could save, on average, around £550 a year.

The Government will begin legislating for these proposals in the Autumn and they are expected to take effect in 2012.

RenewableUK, one of the country's leading renewable energy trade association welcomed the plan as an 'important step' in maximising employment and business benefits in the renewable energy sector.

RenewableUK small systems manager, Indre Vaizgelaite, said: "It is encouraging to see Government taking action on renewables and the environment.

As an industry we look forward to next phase of the Green Deal which is expected to focus on the microgeneration sector.

"The UK small wind sector currently has more than 14,000 small systems installed but the Green Deal will be a great catalyst for further growth which in conjunction with more energy-efficient homes, will be vital in driving down our carbon emissions."

RenewableUK's 2010 small systems market report revealed that the UK market stands at £17.2 million and the figure for UK manufacturing export revenue from this sector is £7.59 million.

Luke Walsh


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