A scheme that will help reduce carbon emissions and household bills by helping people make properties more energy efficient will come into effect on 1 October.
The Green Living Grant scheme was approved by Tynwald on Thursday, and is part of Government’s commitment to reach net zero by 2050, for the benefit of the environment.
Buildings are one of the Island’s largest contributors of carbon emissions, mainly through heating and water systems that rely on natural gas and oil, and the need to incentivise people to retrofit such items forms part of the Government’s action plan to reach this target.
It is estimated that the £7.2m scheme, paid from the Climate Change Transformation fund, could significantly lower emissions in around 1,200 properties and save nearly 100,000 tonnes of CO2 entering the atmosphere - the equivalent to taking 1,500 cars off the road over the next 30 years.
First, applicants will be invited to apply for a Government funded Manx Home Energy Audit (MHEA), based on the UK Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), which will provide an overall energy rating and a list of energy saving solutions for each property.
When a home is built, sold or rented in the UK, it needs an EPC, which rates properties from A (most efficient) to G, and shows how much the building will cost to heat and light, and what its emissions are likely to be.
Applicants in receipt of this certificate and whose household has an annual income below £112k (before tax allowances), and an EPC rating of D or lower, will be offered support to pay for up to 50% of the listed measures, capped at £6,000 per property.
At this stage home owners, landlords (up to six properties) and tenants (with the owner’s permission), will be able to apply for financial support to install improvements ranging from insulation and double glazing to low carbon heating systems and solar panels.
Ray Harmer MHK, Minister for Policy and Reform, said:
‘This Government is committed to reaching net zero by 2050 and this important scheme targets one of the biggest contributors of carbon emissions – our homes. As well as the environmental implications it will also create jobs for the construction industry as it recovers from recent restrictions.’
‘This scheme delivers on the climate change action plan which followed Professor James Curran’s independent report and sets out our plan to reach carbon neutrality.’
Properties will be assessed before and after work to confirm energy efficiency improvements and allow the cumulative reductions to be monitored and recorded.
More details, including how and where to apply, are available on the Green Living Grant scheme page.