Alex Neil MSP, Superglass CEO Alex McLeod, operations director John Ivinson and line operator Gordon McNab.

Home Insulation Scheme enters 'Phase 2'

Published:  08 October, 2010

PERTH: Insulation manufacturer Superglass played host to the launch of the second phase of the Scottish Government's Home Insulation Scheme (HIS) which aims to encourage another 200 000 households to insulate their properties.

Superglass chief executive officer Alex McLeod welcomed Alex Neil, Minister for Housing and Communities MSP, to the manufacturer's Stirling plant where Mr Neil announced that 19 further regions would be added to the scheme to help Scottish householders conserve energy, reduce fuel bills and save money.

Mr Neil was shown how Scotland's only independent manufacturer of glass mineral fibre insulation products uses 100% bottled glass in its manufacturing process, recycling 35 000 tonnes/year in the production of glass wool insulation for homes.

Speaking at the launch, Mr Neil said: "It's fantastic to see Scottish manufacturers like Superglass using innovative methods to produce eco-friendly insulation materials. This is an excellent example of Scotland's green industry stimulating our economy, saving households cash and driving down carbon emissions."

Mr McLeod added: "I am delighted that the Scottish Government is supporting home insulation as the most cost-effective method of achieving energy efficiency targets in Scotland.

"As the sole manufacturer of insulation in Scotland we hope to see substantial benefit from the scheme. Superglass is well positioned to utilise available capacity to support the demand the scheme creates, which, together with other wider initiatives, should further secure additional employment in our business."

Following the visit, the Scottish Government announced that a further £10m, in addition to the original £15m under HIS, would be made available under the Universal Home Insulation Scheme to allow councils to offer free insulation measures and energy-efficiency advice.

Superglass sales and marketing director Mike Beard cautiously welcomed the British Government's Green Deal to radically overhaul the energy-efficiency of homes and small businesses, which Energy Secretary Chris Huhne claims could support 250 000 jobs over the next 20 years.

The Green Deal aims to make energy-efficiency affordable for all, regardless of whether people own or rent their property. Up-front finance will be attached to the building's energy meter, with people paying back over time. Given that the repayments will be less than the savings on bills, many will stand to benefit from day one.

But Mr Beard is concerned that the deal is already appearing to slip from being in place at the start of 2012 to starting at an as yet unconfirmed date later in 2012.

"The DECC statement must be taken seriously, especially as this is the first pass at dealing with these issues by the new Government. Twenty years seems a long time and previous experience suggests statements like this are overblown and over-optimistic.”

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