Green Heat Finance Taskforce minutes: November 2022

Minutes of the meeting held on 2 November 2022.

Attendees and apologies

  • Sara Thiam – Scottish Council for Development and Industry (Meeting Chair)   
  • Patrick Harvie MSP – Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenant’s Rights  
  • Kirsty Hamilton – Independent  
  • Sandy MacDonald – Scottish Financial Enterprise  
  • Emma Harvey – Green Finance Institute  
  • Eddie McAvinchey – Scottish National Investment Bank  
  • Ian Cochran – Edinburgh University Business School/Institute for Climate Economics  
  • Rufus Grantham – Bankers Without Boundaries  
  • Simon McWhirter - UK Green Building Council Scotland  
  • Lewis Shand Smith – Energy Consumers Commission  
  • Andy Kerr – Climate KIC  
  • Professor Lori McElroy – Chair of the Scottish Government Short Life Working Group on Tenements and Multiple Occupancy / Multiple Use Buildings  
  • Sherina Peek – Policy Manager from the Association of Local Authority Chief Housing Officers (ALACHO)  
  • Alice Hunter – SG, Head of Domestic Regulations Team (HIB Regs Unit)   
  • Rhys Robertson – SG, Heat in Buildings Advice and SME Delivery Team (Energy Efficient Scotland Delivery Unit)  


  • Carole Stewart – Heat in Buildings Division, Scottish Government  
  • Michelle Rayneard – Heat Buildings Division, Scottish Government  
  • Toby Tucker – Scottish Futures Trust, Net Zero Team  
  • Peter Irving – Heat in Buildings Division, Scottish Government  

Items and actions

Welcome and apologies

The Chair welcomed members to the sixth meeting of the Green Heat Finance Taskforce (GHFT).  No apologies had been received for this meeting, which was chaired by Sara Thiam.  

Summary note and actions points from previous meeting, including member notification of any conflicts of interest.  

All members confirmed they were content with the summary note and action points from the previous meeting of 7 September 2022.  No conflicts of interest were raised.  

All actions were noted as have being completed.  

The following dates and times for future meetings of the GHFT throughout 2023 were agreed:

  • 10:00-12:00 on Wednesday 18 January
  • 10:00-12:00 on Wednesday 15 March  
  • 10:00-12:00 on Wednesday 17 May  
  • 10:00-12:00 on Wednesday 5 July   
  • 10:00-12:00 on Wednesday 20 September 

Secretariat update –Scottish Government  

Update on stakeholder engagement -  the next Social Housing Subgroup meeeting will be held as a future workshop. The report on the interim recommendations is due in March 2023. The launch of the Heat and Energy Efficiency Scotland which is the National Public Energy Agency was also shared with the taskforce.

Action 1: Secretariat to share link to the news release of 26 October, concerning the launch.

Action 2: Secretariat to share date of January workshop once set.  

Presentation - Scottish Non- Domestic Buildings Data, Toby Tucker, Scottish Futures Trust  

Short presentation on available data on non-domestic buildings in Scotland.

Presentation – Non- Domestic Retrofit Solutions, Emma Harvey, Green Finance Institute  

Emma gave a presentation on the key trends in the commercial buildings sector.

Members noted the diverse nature of buildings in this sector. It was queried as to whether there were enough incentives to innovate and improve.  

Members also mentioned that the burden may fall on the tenants of such buildings (who may not have long leases) to make improvements.

It was noted that globally, the green bond market has been the most popular model for retrofitting and sustainability linked loans had seen strong growth in the real estate sector. Other models discussed by members were Green REITS and leases.

Presentation – Current non- domestic / small to medium enterprises (SMEs) support - Scottish Government  

This presentation summarised existing support, as well as the barriers and challenges to greening buildings in this sector.

It was noted that figures for the numbers of buildings supported under the SME loan scheme were collated at a regional level. Members requested site of this data.

Action 3: Officials to provide statistics on number of SMEs assisted, by region.   

Group discussion on developing financial solutions for non-domestic buildings  

It was noted that a whole neighbourhood approach would encompass both domestic and SME buildings. 

The Minister stated that businesses that were based in buildings that were not specifically designed or set-up to be commercial premises, often being partly residential too will also need to be considered.

The group noted that local authorities may be best-placed to promote uptake of energy efficiency improvements to buildings by means of a ‘place-based’ approach, comparable to the way in which they had been instrumental in promoting the rollout of super-fast broadband.  

January meeting and any other business  

The Regional Net Zero Investment Forum in Glasgow was flagged, being hosted by 3CI, in partnership with the Scottish National Investment Bank, on 22 December.

The group noted that the next GHFT would be held in January on the challenges and barriers for place-based solutions.  

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