£70M Extra Support For Fuel Poverty In Wales

13 October 2013

The Welsh Government has committed £70m of additional funding in a bid to tackle fuel poverty in some of the most deprived parts of Wales, it has been revealed.

This investment will result in more energy efficient homes, with energy saving measures like Cavity Wall Insulation, Solid Wall Insulation, and Loft Insulation being installed to cut the cost of energy bills.

The additional £70m will be used to incentivise energy companies to invest in Wales, and in particular those parts of Wales that are at the greatest risk from increasing fuel prices.

“The Welsh Government is committed to tackling fuel poverty,” explained Alun Davies, Minister for Natural Resources and Food.

“We will use [this funding] to attract and incentivise private companies by offering to match fund their investment in improving the energy efficiency of Welsh homes.”

Under the Energy Company Obligation, energy companies are required to aid consumers cut their fuel bill by installing energy efficiency measures, including Cavity Wall Insulation, Loft Insulation, and economical heating systems.

£35m will be made available in 2014-15 and another £35m will become available in 2015-16.

The funding will be available alongside current funding under the Welsh Government’s Arbed scheme.

Launched in 2009, the Arbed programme has seen the installation of energy efficient home improvements across Wales. The first phase of the scheme was responsible for more than 7,900 measures being fitted in Welsh homes, including 4,000 instances of Solid Wall Insulation.

Currently in its second phase, the scheme has seen 4,800 homes benefit from Solid Wall Insulation, Cavity Wall Insulation and energy efficient boilers.

“This additional £70m will allow us to build on the success of Arbed and ensure economic growth,” explained Davies. “Not only will this ensure warmer homes and lower fuel bills in some of the less wealthy areas of Wales, it will also offer new and lucrative opportunities for Welsh business and ensure a healthy supply of high quality job opportunities in communities across Wales.”

The Welsh Government’s schemes are an extension of energy efficient initiative currently being promoted by the UK Government.

Under the Energy Company Obligation, British householders can apply for free Cavity Wall Insulation, free Loft Insulation, and free boiler replacement, paid for with a non-repayable grant.

Those that do not meet the requirements for an Energy Company Obligation grant can apply for a fixed rate loan to pay for energy efficient measures, including Solid Wall Insulation, solar PV, and more than 40 other measures, under the Green Deal.

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