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At the moment we think our Home Energy Masterplan is unique in the UK, as it is the only widely available detailed energy analysis tool of its kind. We know of nothing currently available that:

  • evaluates the cost and energy/CO2/fuel bill effect of the wide range of energy improvements tailored on individual houses
  • includes actual occupant usages of heating, hot water, appliances and lighting
  • draws on a database of implementation costs in order to provide economic paybacks and cost per unit CO2saved for each recommendation.

We thought we would use this blog to pass on some of our findings from the hundreds of analyses we have completed to date as we believe that our unique experience may give a real insight into what will be needed for the Green Deal – and might be interesting to readers too. Filter the blog on the categories Green Deal and Parity Opinion.

The Green Deal currently seems to be planned based on a ‘golden rule’ where people should be saving more on their fuel bills than they are paying out in loan repayments. In order for people to be able to make the correct choices they will need to be given realistic estimates for the savings that are probable for their house, taking into account the way they live in it – as well as the savings that might be expected given ‘typical’ occupancy.  In order to achieve this we believe software will need to be available for the Green Deal, and it will need to include the following:

  • An ability to calibrate the model of the house’s energy use to the actual energy use of the house
  • An ability to model the actual behavioural use of the property – lighting, appliances, temperature settings, timings and zoning, actual hot water use, and so on – alongside ‘typical’ use for a house of that kind.
  • Regional temperature and insolation (sunshine) data
  • An ability to provide realistic costings for measures and groups of measures so that paybacks can be calculated
  • An ability to evaluate packages of measures alongside individual measures

We’ll be elaborating on the points above in subsequent blogs postings as our experience has shown that without all of the above there is a risk that the projected savings could be very different from those actually achieved.  The Green Deal will be essentially a financial product, and we believe that people deserve to get the best possible estimate of the savings they are likely to achieve, especially if the Green Deal is offered to vulnerable people who are taking part in order to save money – as they may end up paying out more in loan repayments than they are savings from the measures.