Retrofit Loughborough

Thermal image showing houses leaking heat through walls and windows

‘Thermal image’ showing houses leaking heat through walls and windows

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Energy efficiency alongside changing our behaviour is a key method of bringing down our household energy consumption. This has the twin benefits of saving money on ever more expensive fuels like gas an electricity, and reducing air pollution.

Tackling our misbehaving homes, making them more energy-efficient is essential if we are to tackle a number of environmental, social and economic problems. Housing is responsible for more than 25%, (a quarter) of the energy used and the carbon dioxide emitted in Great Britain [1]. This is more energy than is used by either road transport or industry. Energy bills are getting higher, having more than doubled in the past 10 years and now a ‘typical’ household is paying £1400 a year on their energy bills.  On average, the poorest
tenth of all households spend 8.4% of their income on energy and it is estimated that 5 million households would spend more than 10%, if they all kept warm enough [2] . For the elderly and vulnerable this has harsh consequences, with an estimated excess winter fuel deaths of 25,000 each year, and a quarter of these attributable to cold damp homes [3]. And lastly, by tackling our poor, energy inefficient housing stock, we can create a new vibrant green-economy, particularly small and medium enterprises, revitalising our local economy and creating new employment.

There is a lot to be done. Transition believes by working together as a community we can make better progress, reaching more people, more quickly. This means building partnerships and networks of citizens, voluntary agencies, local enterprises and business to create a truly vital dynamic movement for energy efficiency so that it becomes part of our normal practice. Retrofit Loughborough is consortium of agencies in Loughborough formed in 2012 which aims to tackle energy efficiency by raising awareness and offering information, and supporting initiatives [5]. The ‘barriers’ we all face in adopting energy efficiency are many and complex. We aim to :

  • Raise awareness and provide information about the solutions households (private or rented) can make to improve their household energy efficiency.
  • Improving confidence and trust in potential suppliers in our local area by building relationships with the business community.
  • Create networks of people who have  undertaken various measures who are willing to share knowledge and experience with others, particularly those less confident in dealing with the trade.
  • Sign post to information on financing energy efficiency such as the Government’s new Green Deal initiative [4] and other alternatives.
  • Work collaboratively to target lower-income households and those in hard to treat housing.

If you are an interested individual, voluntary body, local government agency, landlord (social or private) or local business please subscribe to our network.

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References

[1] Great Britain’s  housing energy fact file, DECC (2011)

[2] Annual report on fuel poverty statistics 2012 DECC (2012)

[3] The Health Impacts of Cold Homes and Fuel Poverty, Marmot Review Team/FoE (2011)

[4] How the green deal works (DECC, https://www.gov.uk/green-deal-energy-saving-measures/how-the-green-deal-works)

[5] Retrofit Loughborough is a consortium of Transition Town Loughborough, PermaRock Products LTD, The Energy Saving Co-operative with support from Loughborough University.

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One Response to Retrofit Loughborough

  1. Pingback: Homes Behaving Badly | The Friday Room

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