Green MOTs for homes under new scheme

Households across the UK will have access to a one-stop shop advising them how to make their homes greener following the launch of a new Government initiative.

Environment Secretary Hilary Benn announced on Monday that the Government would pump £100m of funding into the Energy Savings Trust to enable them to operate the Green Homes Service nationwide by 2011.

The scheme will offer people a green MOT for their homes and a range of financial support packages, as well as piloting a premium service to offer households a green home makeover.

People buying or selling homes with poor energy ratings will also be contacted with information about grants, loans and financial packages to improve their ratings.

The service will also offer advice on saving water, reducing waste, and environmentally-friendly travel, and to find information on grants and offers from energy companies.

Mr Benn said: "We need to make this as easy as possible for people to do. There's a lot of help out there in the form of grants, advice and other assistance, but it's hard to know where to start.

"The Green Homes Service will cut through the confusion by providing a one-stop shop including a green MOT for your home and a green home makeover.

"We'll be backing this by making help and support available to even more households than in the past."

Philip Sellwood, chief executive of the Energy Saving Trust, said: "A simple, no-nonsense approach with practical green advice is what people are after, tailored for them and that is right for their lifestyles.

"They want a total green solution, delivered by one impartial, trusted organisation. This is what Green Homes will provide."

Ministers said the scheme will be back up by policies under the new Carbon Emissions Reduction Target, which sets targets for household energy suppliers to promote reductions in domestic carbon emissions.

The Green Homes Service will start on April 1.

Kate Martin



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