London, UK – The Insulation Manufacturers' Association (IMA) and eight other energy industry efficiency groups want the UK finance minister to include insulation retrofits to the UK's existing housing stock in his economic statement due early this month.
IMA wants housing insulation at heart of UK coronavirus recovery
The groups wrote to the Finance Minister Rishi Sunak expressing their disappointment that refurbishing homes did not feature in an earlier speech by Prime Minister Boris Johnson. They welcomed Johnson’s commitment to improve schools and further education establishments, but are concerned that the approach is too limited.
They said: 'Young people living in cold, leaky homes whose parents or guardian cannot afford basic necessities due to the cost of heating are also at a tremendous disadvantage. Similarly, the pressure on the National Health Service (NHS) and care system… could be alleviated by reducing the number of people who live in unfit homes.'
In a statement, the group stated: 'In the 2019 Conservative Manifesto, the government pledged to invest £2.5bn ($3.1bn) in the energy efficiency of UK homes through a Home Upgrade Grants (HUG) scheme.'
IMA, which represents rigid PIR and polyurethane insulation makers in the UK, claimed that such an investment now would be a good way to stimulate the UK economy post coronavirus. If 10,000 homes were retrofitted, at least 500 new jobs would be created and £63m could be saved from NHS costs.
'Rolled out at scale, the scheme would deliver 185,000 retrofits, 8000 jobs and save £1bn from NHS costs,' it said. 'The Home Upgrade Grants scheme should be confirmed by the Chancellor as part of the forthcoming economic statement and a pilot version introduced ahead of the National Infrastructure Strategy.'
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