Support to help mitigate against future energy price increases.
Support is being expanded to improve the energy efficiency of homes and tackle energy costs.
In response to the cost of living crisis, three key Scottish Government energy efficiency and heat programmes will be boosted from April.
- Expanding the Home Energy Scotland (HES) advice service, which provides free, impartial advice available to all households in Scotland on making homes warmer, greener and easier to heat. Capacity will be increased by 20% to support an extra 12,000 households a year, whilst a service offering bespoke advice to the most vulnerable households will be doubled.
- Widening the eligibility criteria of the Scottish Government’s flagship Warmer Homes Scotland fuel poverty programme to include more groups within the 60 – 75 years age range.
- Increasing the level of funding individual fuel poor households could benefit from through the local authority-led Area Based Schemes.
More than £160 million of funding is being invested this year to help make Scotland’s homes and buildings warmer and more efficient, supporting efforts to tackle fuel poverty whilst helping householders manage their energy bills and reduce carbon emissions.
Zero Carbon Buildings Minister Patrick Harvie said:
“Everyone needs a safe, warm place to call home. I am acutely aware that soaring energy prices will be causing many people to worry about the cost of their fuel bills and it is vital that people struggling with energy bills get the information and support they need, while governments step up with appropriate actions.
“We are using all powers and resources available to us to support people through the cost of living crisis and the Scottish Budget last month included a package of measures to provide immediate help with rising bills. At the same time, powers relating to energy markets remain reserved and we have repeatedly called for the UK Government to urgently take further, tangible actions to support households.
“However, immediate help also has to go side by side with longer term action. Investing in energy efficiency is the best buffer against the ebb and flow of global energy prices. That is why we are boosting energy efficiency programmes today and over the whole parliamentary term.”
Householders can access free and impartial support through Home Energy Scotland to improve the energy efficiency of their homes. Home Energy Scotland can be contacted on their freephone number 0808 808 2282 or via the Home Energy Scotland website.
Through Scottish Government investment, over 150,000 households now live in homes which are warmer and cheaper to heat, with households saving an estimated £936 million pounds on their fuel bills over the lifetime of these improvements, with a total reduction in carbon emissions of 3.4 million tonnes.
£50 million is being invested in 2021-22 in Warmer Homes Scotland, the Scottish Government scheme helping households in fuel poverty make their homes warmer and more affordable to heat
£64 million is being invested this year in Area Based Schemes, targeting communities blighted by fuel poverty and improving energy efficiency, reducing costs and carbon emissions from heating their homes.
The Home Energy Scotland Loan and Cashback Scheme currently enables homeowners to apply for up to £7,500 in cashback if they take out a loan to install green heating systems, such as a heat pump, as well as up to £6,000 towards eligible energy efficiency measures to reduce poor energy efficiency.
As part of a wider £290 million package of funding announcements made to tackle the cost of living crisis, in 2022-23 the Scottish Government will commit a further £10 million to continue the Fuel Insecurity Fund. The fund has helped households at risk of self-disconnection, or self-rationing their energy use, since late 2020.
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