The Government trumpeted the Green Deal as its energy policy flagship. But some quiet backtracking is eroding companies’ confidence to invest.
There was no doubting the initial ambition of the Green Deal. “We are launching a revolution in energy efficiency,” said Chris Huhne, then Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, introducing the enabling legislation in 2010. “A once-in-a-lifetime refit of our outdated homes to make them fit for 2050.”
It is the Coalition’s energy policy flagship, itself regularly billed by his successor, Edward Davey, as his “number one policy priority.” His ministerial colleague, Greg Barker, adds that the majority of homes – some 14m – must be reached within the decade.
But lately there have been some really worrying signs that these ambitions are being seriously tempered. Initially subtly, increasingly overtly, the signals are being sent about lowering expectations regarding actual results.
By doing so, the Government is effectively setting a vicious circle to work, weakening the confidence of established companies, reducing the willingness of new players to invest.