Croydon council have approved a three-year scheme to save low-income households in the private and rented sector at least £400 on their energy bills by making their homes warmer.
The Croydon Healthy Homes initiative will give over 600 struggling households help with their energy costs including:
• Free energy assessments
• Support to find the best tariffs for gas and electricity
• A property survey to see if they need larger energy-saving measures, such as wall insulation
• Advice on whether they are eligible for means-tested help with their bills
Each assessment will include the fitting of small energy-efficiency measures such as radiator reflector panels, support with energy bills and advice on avoiding damp and mould issues.
Eligible households will also be referred to the Greater London Authority’s ‘Warmer Homes’ scheme, which funds the installation of new energy-efficient boilers, cavity wall and loft insulation, and other improvements for homeowners on benefits.
Residents receiving these assessment visits can also find out about other local support such as fire safety and healthier living. In addition, the council plans to offer energy-saving and money-saving advice to the wider public at eight outreach events across the borough next autumn and winter.
The new scheme followed a trial in the winter of 2016/17, which fitted for free energy-saving measures that will save 213 Croydon households in the private sector an average of £416 each over a 15-year period. They also received advice ranging from the benefits of installing energy-saving lightbulbs to support with damp or mould issues.
The £96,000 scheme is being delivered through the Section 106 Community Energy Fund, which developers contribute towards to offset their schemes’ carbon footprints.
A council spokesperson said that based on Government figures, Croydon has 14,085 households which are considered to be fuel poor, meaning they have higher than average energy costs that would leave them with a disposable income below the poverty line.
The Croydon Healthy Homes initiative was approved at cabinet on 19 March.
Croydon Healthy Homes is designed for homeowners and residents in the private rented sector, who can refer themselves or be referred by professionals such as GPs or social workers. (Source: Croydon council press release)
SUSTAINABLE ENERGY MOVE
Croydon council have pledged to stop using energy generated from fossil fuels by 2050 by joining a growing nationwide alliance across the public and private sectors.
At Monday night’s full council meeting Cllr Stuart King outlined the council’s new membership of UK100, a network of local authorities with a goal of using 100 per cent clean energy by 2050.
The commitment means the council aims for 70pc of its energy to be from renewable sources such as wind, water or solar power, plus the remaining 30pc through low-carbon fuels.
The council’s move comes months after it unveiled its new five-year air quality action plan, which includes a commitment to cutting the use of diesel engines across the borough, a greener council vehicle fleet and doing work with local schools to promote more sustainable travel.
Cllr King, cabinet member for transport and environment, said: “In Croydon we acknowledge the responsibility we have as a council to take a lead and to help secure an environmentally sustainable future, both for our residents and those beyond our borough.”
Croydon joining means the UK100 network now has around 80 local authorities on board, as well as business representatives and a higher profile when dealing with Government on environmental issues. (Source: Croydon council press release)