Changes to ECO - What you need to know

Last month the government confirmed changes to the Energy Companies Obligation (ECO). ECO is a finance scheme set up to reduce the UK’s energy consumption and support people living in fuel poverty.

Proposed changes to the scheme were first announced last December to reduce costs for suppliers and the impact on consumer bills. However, under the new proposals the government is now confirming that:

-The level of ECO activity directed at low income and vulnerable households will be maintained at around £520 million per year, which supports 260,000 households on average every year.

-The carbon-saving elements of the scheme will change, taking an average of £30-£35 off household energy bills this year.

-The scheme will be extended by two years and expire in 2017

The extended version of ECO scheme also includes a minimum target of 100,000 solid wall insulation jobs to be completed by 2017, giving stability and longer-term certainty for the supply chain and stimulating growth in the sector.

These changes will result in more carbon emissions being saved over the life of the scheme, in addition to the extra £120 million support being given to improve people’s homes this year alone through the Green Deal Home Improvement Fund. Furthermore, an extra 600,000 homes will be made warmer by 2017. Since ECO started on 1 January 2013, more than 700,000 homes have been made more energy efficient.

For more information on the changes to ECO, please click here