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Baxi's Osborne sees upside to LCBP closure

The termination of the government-funded Low Carbon Buildings Programme (LCBP) 'clears the way for a broader, more financially sustainable approach in encouraging the installation of low and zero carbon (LZC) heating technologies in our home', says the Baxi group's Simon Osborne.
As part of the coalition government's cost-cutting programme led by Chancellor George Osborne, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) announced the closure of the scheme on May 24. The LCBP has provided an estimated 20,000 grants for the capital and installation cost of microgeneration equipment for homeowners and not-for-profit organisations, since its introduction in April 2006.

'On the surface, the termination of the LCBP appears to be bad news for the LZC heating sector' says Simon Osborne, specification channel manager at Baxi Group. 'However, in the Queen's speech the government announced the introduction of new green loans for those who want to save energy. These offer a more financially sustainable option than the LCBP, and will, in our view, do more to grow investment in LZC technologies, especially for those on low incomes. Loans will be paid back through a pay as you save scheme which, unlike the LCBP, does not require the homeowner to finance the LZC technology up front'.

DECC has said that all new incentive schemes and tariffs will be designed to operate under the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) framework and supported by tariffs on the utility bills.

'This new link with the MCS will be an important change' added Osborne. 'It will effectively pass the ownership of being green from the eligible few under the LCBP to everyone. That has to be a positive step forward.'

Details of the green loans and other new incentives are expected to be announced in the forthcoming Energy Bill.
24 June 2010

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