Our Net Zero Homes report and the government’s 2023 Green Policy commitments

Where do the government’s recent plans for greening the housing stock announcements fit in to UK Finance’s Net Zero Homes report recommendations?

In November 2022 we published our Net Zero Homes – Time For a Reset Report. The report was designed to act as a call for action to government and stakeholders from the various parts of the housing sector to play a fuller part in greening the UK’s housing stock. The report contains ten recommendations which we believe to be key in helping us achieve our net zero targets.

Since its release, we have engaged actively with UK government and other stakeholders using our report to help drive our net zero agenda ‘asks’. We were therefore pleased to see the commitments made by government as part of its set of policy announcements on 30 March 2023, but how many of those policies announcements aligned with our recommendations?

Our ten recommendations are collated into three main categories. These are based on our analysis of the changes required and called for action to be inspired, funding delivered and for standards to be redefined.

Following successful engagement with key government officials, ministers and MPs including Chris Skidmore MP and Lord Callanan, it is encouraging to note the alignment between our recommendations and the policies outlined in the governments Powering Up Britain and Green Finance Strategy papers.

We were delighted to see that some of our key asks were duly answered in the government’s commitments to:

  • strengthen support to local authorities who have a closer knowledge of their local housing stocks
  • provide a £30 million heat pump investment scheme
  • create the Great British Insulation Scheme, offering £1 billion to help around 300,000 local authority homes save up to £400 per year on energy bills
  • develop a low carbon training framework, opening job opportunities for 10,000 more green energy engineers.

More broadly, we welcome longer-term commitments to delivering clarity on the Net Zero transition across the wider economy, including further announcements to support decarbonisation and nature preservation at the Autumn Statement and publishing a joint government-industry led Net Zero and Nature Workforce action plan by 2024.

UK Finance’s chief executive David Postings is a member of the government’s Energy Efficiency Taskforce which provides us with the opportunity to help shape the delivery of these commitments, highlight those of our recommendations yet to be answered and drive the net-zero agenda on behalf of the mortgage industry.

We remain committed to ensure the lending industry plays its part to help the UK’s housing stock to achieve the government’s net-zero targets and we’ll continue to pursue positive change on behalf of mortgage lenders, homeowners and, of course, the environment.

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