Jon Booth, director of household energy efficiency at Decc said at the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) event today “It is right to think about the reform of the Green Deal in this second year.”
He added that allowing an opt-out of the golden rule has “quite significant risks attached to it” but addressing the funding gap was “the most important thing”.
A series of changes are planned for the Green Deal, one of which is the stamp duty rebate, that will make it more attractive to consumers, with a relaunch planned once the changes are fully completed.
A new marketing campaign is also planned to entice potential customers.
Climate change minister Greg Barker said the latest figures for the Green Deal, which showed the 626 plans had gone live with a further 984 plans either new or pending, was a “good base” but he admitted the number of people signing up to Green Deal plans had been disappointing.
He said: “The finance is starting to flow but it is certainly below the 10,000 plan I thought would be written in the first year.
“I thought the 10,000 plans would be the total number of people taking up a Green Deal measure – I didn’t think the split between self-pay and Green Deal finance would be so wide.”
Changes are needed to increase the take up this year, although it is promising that 81% of the 130,000 people had agreed to energy saving measures being installed.
Barker added “If we’re going to rollout and scale up we have to recognise we’re increasingly going to come up against those barriers to deployment and finance will become more of an issue,” he said.
“We need to inject more momentum into the scheme. To do that there are new incentives to drive up demand but we are also going to make a series of improvements to the green deal itself.”
Jonathan Reynolds the shadow energy and climate change minister said the number of plans taken up in the first year was “disappointing” and reforms are needed to boost customer uptake, although he ruled out scrapping the golden rule, but did say it “could be relaxed to some extent in a way that brings the benefits forward.”