Green Deal could stall without SME support

Published:  16 May, 2013

Small building companies need fairer access to the Green Deal (GD) market if the shortage of installers is to be addressed, the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has warned in response to the latest statistics from the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC).

Almost 19,000 GD assessments were carried out as of the end of April 2013, yet there are only 942 GD installer companies approved to carry out this work – nowhere near enough to deliver energy-efficiency improvements to Britain’s 26m existing homes by 2050.

Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “There are more than 240,000 companies in the construction industry that employ fewer than 14 people. These companies are often best placed to carry out Green Deal work, but because it is difficult to access the market, they are reluctant to train the number of approved installers needed to retrofit Britain’s building stock.”

To help address this, the FMB has recently launched its Strategy for the Low Carbon Building and Refurbishment Market, which is aimed at encouraging and supporting its members to engage with and participate in this rapidly growing market.

Mr Berry continued: “Our new strategy will help increase opportunities for SMEs in the low-carbon refurbishment market. Today’s statistics from DECC show our strategy is well timed. The Green Deal has now been open for business for almost four months and demand for work under the initiative appears to be growing, but it still feels like a missed opportunity to the majority of SMEs in the industry who haven’t seen any sign of transformation in the energy-efficiency market.

“As part of our strategy, the FMB will not only continue to call for the incentives needed to create consumer demand for energy-efficiency work, but will also ensure that FMB members have timely access to relevant high-quality training and certification services to enable them to develop their businesses to be able to respond to low-carbon work opportunities.”

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