A report to Brighton & Hove City Council’s housing committee will this week set out plans to further reduce carbon emissions from council homes. Measures will also benefit private tenants and homeowners on low incomes.
Plans to reduce the climate impact of some of Brighton and Hove’s homes are due to be discussed by councillors this week.
A 2019 report from the Climate Change Committee, an independent body set up to advise the UK on climate targets, showed that home energy use accounts for 14% of total UK carbon emissions and has risen in recent years. Greens say that through putting climate adaptation measures in our homes, both planet and people will benefit.
The report provides an update on preparatory work ongoing in relation to improvements in council homes. Planned work includes the installation of solar PVs on at least 1000 homes, reviews of the energy performance of council homes and an exploration of how some communal blocks in North Whitehawk could benefit from gas boilers being replaced with the more environmentally friendly air source heat pumps, with potential reductions in heating bills as a result.
The report also asks councillors to agree the allocation of up to £400,000 to extend the Warm Safe Homes Grant scheme. The scheme supports homeowners and private tenants in fuel poverty. Extending the scheme would increase the available grant from £7,500 to £20,000, which would enable more significant works to take place.
Councillor Siriol Hugh-Jones, Co-Chair of the Housing Committee said:
“How we heat our houses is both a vital issue for our residents and a key way to help prevent emissions from cold homes – so this work really can’t progress fast enough. Working alongside Labour councillors as part of our joint plans for housing, we have already committed to reducing carbon emissions in both council homes and the homes of those on low incomes.
“The extension of the grant scheme is real progress and will enable more residents to benefit. By installing climate adaptation measures in their homes, we allow people and planet to flourish. Residents who take this forward could see a reduction in fuel bills and improvements to their health and wellbeing.”