£9M Boost for Scotland's Fuel Poor

15 October 2013

Scotland’s poorest households are set to receive a £9m boost as the Government looks to keep homes warm and reduce the cost of energy bills, it has been revealed.

Under the Home Energy Efficiency Programmes (HEEPS), £8.8m will be shared between 10 Scottish local authorities under the proviso that it is used to pay for energy efficient home improvements, including Cavity Wall Insulation, Solid Wall Insulation and Loft Insulation, for those households most at risk from fuel poverty.

Local authorities receiving a share of the funding include: Glasgow, Perth & Kinross, Falkirk, Renfrewshire, Fife, West Dunbartonshire, North Lanarkshire, North Ayrshire, Midlothian, and Clackmannanshire.

Glasgow is set to benefit most with £2m of the funding being allocated directly to the city.

£46m of funding has already been shared between Scotland’s 32 local authorities as a part of the HEEPS scheme, which aims to provide affordable warmth to households at risk from fuel poverty. The scheme is being funded by the Energy Company Obligation.

“Rising energy bills remain a huge concern for this Government,” explained Margaret Burgess, Housing and Welfare Minister.

“Today’s funding will see thousands of homes across Scotland receive new measures like Solid Wall Insulation – helping to drive down the number of people living in fuel poverty.”

The scheme has been designed to plug Scotland’s leaky housing stock, reducing the amount of energy lost by installing Solid Wall Insulation or Cavity Wall Insulation, depending which is suited to a property, as well as Loft Insulation, which can save up to 25% of energy by itself.

The work will be offered free to those householders meeting set requirements, including those receiving Income Support, Jobseekers Allowance, and a number of other means tested benefits.

Burgess continued: "Basic energy efficiency measures can make a huge difference to Scottish families who are struggling to make ends meet, allowing them to heat their homes more cost effectively.

“To help tackle fuel poverty we are actively working with councils and energy companies to ensure that Scotland continues to get its fair share of funding for efficiency programmes like these. We are committing around a quarter of a billion pounds to it in this spending review period.”

Households not entitled to free Solid Wall Insulation, Cavity Wall Insulation, or Loft Insulation as part of Scotland’s HEEPS scheme can apply for a fixed-rate loan to pay for these measures, and more than 40 more, under the Green Deal, the Government’s other energy efficiency initiative.

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