The government’s flagship energy efficiency scheme, the Green Deal, should be upon us in the autumn. The Lighting Industry Association gives us the lowdown

The Green Deal is the government’s key policy on energy efficiency, and it is making its way through Parliament as part of the Energy Bill.

The government has just completed a public consultation, and the final legislation is expected to be published in time for the first phase to come into force in the autumn of 2012.

Under the Green Deal, householders and businesses will be able to take out loans to improve the energy efficiency of their properties, and the loan repayments will be made from the savings on their energy bills.

The ‘golden rule’ is that the savings from the energy-efficiency measures installed must be paid for out of the savings on the pre-investment energy bill for the property. Loan repayments are made through charges to the householder’s or business’s energy bill.

When the legislation comes into force, the government will no doubt be promoting the new scheme and its bene ts. How will this affect lighting?

Measure for measure

Current drafts of the regulations allow professionally installed, ‘non-portable’ lighting to be included as an allowable energy-saving measure. How widely it is taken up by householders or businesses will depend upon the viability of the proposals. For example, the cost of the measures being installed and the interest rates on the loan must be compared with financing such investment by more traditional routes.

Where the scheme does offer viable solutions to users, it could stimulate the market for energy efficient lighting.

It could also potentially bring about some changes in the market in the form of some new influencers, such as the Green Deal provider and the Green Deal assessor.

The provider is the organisation that, as the name implies, provides the  nance, which will all come from the open market, not the government.

They will therefore have an in uence in the market through the procedures, controls and structures they develop to support their businesses.

Important influencers

The Green Deal assessor is expected to be an important in uencer because the legislation, as it is currently drafted, requires proposals for Green Deal  nance to be prepared by an assessor based on assessments of properties. Assessors must report on all aspects of energy use in a property, which will probably mean making use of expertise from others to complement their own experience. The assessor could be independent or employed by others.

Overall the Lighting Industry Association supports the Green Deal because it is a government initiative to further stimulate energy efficiency, which is relevant to lighting. We do have some concerns and suggestions for improvement that we have fed back through the consultation.

We believe, for example, that lighting controls in domestic premises should be included. We shall have to see what the final legislation looks like and how strong the take-up of the scheme is, but assuming it has a good take-up, it will bring some changes to the market.

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