Homeowners will receive vouchers worth up to £5,000 each as part of a ‘green energy’ economic recovery package worth £2 billion set to be announced by the government.
The funding is part of an expected £3 billion package Chancellor Rishi Sunak will unveil on Wednesday to create jobs, upgrade buildings and protect the environment as part of efforts to rebuild the economy after Covid-19.
The scheme will also include a £1 billion programme to transform schools, hospitals and other public buildings so they are more energy efficient and meet ‘green’ targets.
The Green Homes Grant scheme will allow households to receive vouchers worth up to £5,000 to use on environmentally-friendly additions such as insulation, low-energy lighting and energy-efficient doors, The Sun reports.
It claims some of the poorest households will be able to access vouchers worth up to £10,000.
The paper adds the scheme will begin in September and could save families up to £600 a year on energy bills, according to Treasury figures.
The £3 billion in green schemes aims to help the UK “build back greener” and meet its legally binding target to cut greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
Campaigners have been calling on government to deliver on a manifesto pledge to invest £9.2 billion in energy efficiency, to boost jobs across the UK, cut consumer bills and reduce carbon emissions as part of the coronavirus recovery plan.
They claimed the payments set to be announced in Wednesday’s economic update was welcome as a “down payment”, but does not measure up to what is needed.
Ed Matthew, associate director at climate think tank E3G, said: “If this funding is the down payment on their manifesto commitment then it is a welcome start.
“If this is the total level of energy efficiency investment they are pledging then it is peanuts – barely enough to get us to the end of this year if we are to get on track to net zero.”
The statement from the Chancellor will also confirm the announcement made last week by Prime Minister Boris Johnson that £40 million will be made available to plant trees, clean up rivers and create new green spaces for people and wildlife which could support up to 5,000 new jobs.
However, shadow business secretary Ed Miliband said the plan was not comprehensive and claimed it leaves out one third of people.
“We have consistently called for a recovery which has energy efficiency at its heart, and will welcome any measures which achieve that,” he said.
“However, this is not a comprehensive plan. It appears there is almost nothing for the people who rent the 8.5 million homes in the social rented sector and private rented sector, which has the worst energy efficiency standards. That means one third of people are left out.”