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Success for Bristol Green Doors

January 16, 2012

Great news that a Bristol group have been awarded Government funds to promote home energy efficiency.  Bristol Green Doors has secured £78,000 from the Local Energy Assessment Fund.  My Lib Dem colleague Energy Secretary Chris Huhne is today announcing the first 80 beneficiaries of the £10 million fund.

The funding comes as the Government gears up for the launch of the Green Deal later this year, the first scheme of its kind in the world, aimed at radically overhauling the energy efficiency of millions of homes across the UK.

The LEAF is managed by a consortium of community networks administered by the Energy Saving Trust. Money is intended to be used for understanding energy efficiency at a local level and renewable energy generation issues. More awards will be made later this month and the projects need to be completed by end of March.

Bristol Green Doors showcase houses where the owners have done something to reduce their energy consumption. They bid for funds so that they could help people clad four properties in a terrace with external wall insulation. The project will promote and normalise low-carbon retro-fitting on ‘hard-to-treat’ private sector homes; and capture key learning points for communities and businesses for the successful delivery of multi-property installations. Three owner-occupied houses and three rented apartments in a 4th house will be supported to jointly procure the installation, funded by the grant and part matched with secured private finance and in-kind support from partners, providing improved energy use and CO2 emissions on a solid-wall terrace considered ‘hard-to-treat’.

The installation will coincide with the second Bristol Green Doors city-wide open homes event on the weekend of 17th and 18th March 2012, becoming a ‘live’ teaching tool in real homes, where technical details usually hidden to visitors can be seen clearly as work in progress. The householders have agreed to participate to share their experiences, motivations and learning with the public visitors to their home, becoming part of the ‘Green Doors’ network of homes across Bristol.

I’m delighted that Bristol Green Doors have secured this funding.  I spoke at their launch event in 2010 and visited several homes that had taken action to reduce their energy consumption.  I’ve also seen a terraced house in Easton where the Technology Strategy Board have completely revamped the house with every possible energy saving measure.

Retrofitting houses in Bristol West will be a major challenge.  Like the majority of my constituents I live in a house built over a century ago, which has solid stone walls.  I can reduce my fuel bills and my carbon footprint with draught insulation, double glazing and so on but my walls will still be cold.  Cladding is expensive and in conservation areas or on listed buildings would have to be done internally – huge disruption as well as costly.

Anyway 2012 will be a major year for the Coalition Government’s energy saving policies.  As well as the Green Deal we will also see the Green Investment Bank making its first investments.  We will find out next month if the Bank HQ is going to be in Bristol. I working hard with many others from the city to make that happen.

[note – I wrote about Bristol Green Doors in September 2010 – ]


UPDATE 14th February – I’m pleased to say that in the second round two Bristol West organisations have been awarded grants – the Easton Energy Group and Transition Montpelier.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. John Rippon permalink
    January 16, 2012 2:49 am

    Dear Stephen, please send me details about the Green Doors” project and how I can apply for help.

  2. January 17, 2012 10:21 am

    JOhn – it’s a demonstration/showcase for people who’ve already done something to their homes. More details in the earlier blog link above or go to

    The Green Deal is a government scheme being launched later this year that will goive up to £10k finance to householders to improve their homes and make the repayments via their reduced energy bills.

  3. January 27, 2012 2:07 pm

    Stephen, I am intrigued to know what percentage of your Bristol West constituents own their own home and what percentage rent. Do you know where I can find this information?

    • February 14, 2012 7:46 pm

      The Census has constituency level data. We are about to get 2011 data but I recall from 2001 that Bristol West has one of the highest levels of private rented property in the country, after Kensington & Chelsea.

  4. February 26, 2012 10:58 am

    I hope the Green Deal will also help those with newly installed but archaic night storage heaters that might be clean but fail miserably to meet their maker’s boast of controlable and economic. When trying to get a more suitable electricity tariff than Economy 7, the provider EDF refuses to make Economy 10 available. So we have to spill out waste heat and supplement with ful-rate power,depending on time of day and outside temperature over which we have no control nor can anticipate. It’sa nightmare..

    • February 26, 2012 10:36 pm

      I suppose storage heaters can help hold down bills (and therefore fuel poverty for some households) but are not so good in periods of volatile weather and heating needs.

  5. February 27, 2012 1:41 am

    I have an all-electric house with storage heaters running on Economy 7 British Gas tariff and it is ruinously expensive but at least I do not have GSH pumping out tons of Co2: a factor which is NEVER mentioned by any political Party because to penalise these unsequestrated CO2 emissions would be voter suicide!!

    I thought that with Hune and his implacable anti-nuclear ideas out of the way we would begin to regain sanity and so we have: Cooperation with French EDF on new nuclear power stations and industrial cooperation on nuclear development are now very belatedly in place. Far too late for me, stuck with my All-electric house and NOT ALLOWED to install double-glazing because I have a Grade II listed flat (I never asked interfering busy-bodies to list it, so why should I suffer??) .Stone walls and no cavity so no help with insulation and internal cladding prohibitively expensive.

    What is all this talk of “Economy 10”, which presumably means a precious few extra hours for my storage heaters and why is it not happening?

  6. July 11, 2012 2:50 pm

    We have been messed around so much with the Green Deal. Next we’ll be taxed even more on “fashionable” green products or the tariffs will become ineffective again like solar products last year.

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