A recurring topic that has kept popping into my consciousness over the past few weeks has been that of financial incentives to encourage of adoption of green technology in buildings.
Firstly, in relation to the incentives that are available in the UK from the government. I’m interested in an air-source heat pump to provide an easier-to-install alternative to a ground-source pump to provide our heating. Whilst the Energy Saving Trust website lists air-source pumps as being covered under the low carbon buildings programme, the Low Carbon Buildings site itself doesn’t! I guess these are the risks of being a (potentially) early adopter of such technologies.
Secondly, when researching my earlier PassivHaus posting, I become rather envious of the seemingly generous financial assistance available in Germany, not only aimed at specific technologies, but at providing cheap mortgages to sustainable self-builders. If only we had similar support here.
Now I read on the BBC website that the a report from The New Local Government Network (whoever they are) says that planning laws should be relaxed and rebates to council tax payments offered to encourage take up of green energy generation technology. A great idea that I thoroughly applaud – to encourage energy saving through positive support rather than the usual negative approach of increasing taxation – but I can’t help but wonder if such support will ever see the light of day. There seems to be a great deal of ingrained negativity in government at all levels – a layer of civil servants hanging on to our money with all their might and at all costs.
I guess there is some support out there if you can navigate your way through the system, but I hope we’ll learn from others, take advice and really do something positive to begin to address the carbon challenge in a holistic, pragmatic manner.