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Big Names Absent From Initial Green Deal List

By Katie Anderson on April 5, 2012

The initial list of companies who are set to offer home insulation deals under the Government’s forthcoming green deal scheme has been revealed.  

A total of twenty two firms have signed up to the scheme under the first wave of registrations, however there are some notable absentees from the list, with big names like Tesco and Marks & Spencer having yet signed up to the deal.

The Green Deal aims to increase domestic energy efficiency by providing households with affordable home improvements such as loft insulation and cavity wall insulation. Although companies can still be added to the list, the failure of Tesco and Marks & Spencer to sign up to the deal straight away has been met with surprise because both firms had previously backed the scheme.

But perhaps of greater concern to the British Government is the fact that only half of the big six energy suppliers in Britain are on the initial list of green deal providers. E.ON, British Gas and Scottish and Southern Electric have agreed to be providers under the scheme, but EDF, npower and Scottish Power are not yet backing it. Could the government’s flagship environmental policy be flagging before it gets started?

A spokesperson for the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) said: “This is just the first tranche of green deal providers. We expect there to be many more companies signing up. We want people to come forward as soon as they feel they are able”.

Despite the DECC’s optimism, there can be little doubt that more high-street retailers were expected to join B&Q on the initial list of home insulation providers. Slow take-up of the scheme could have been the reason why Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander announced a £200 million incentive for homeowners late last year.

Government minister Greg Barker opted to focus on the positives of the initial list, which was published on Wednesday. Mr Barker said: “The commitment shown today highlights the opportunity organisations see in the green deal, which only bodes well for the scheme’s future success.

“We will be working with these organisations to ensure they can fulfil the potential they have demonstrated today and become the first to offer green deals”.

A spokesperson for Tesco added: “We are supportive of the aims of the green deal. We already provide home energy efficiency services and we’re in discussion with the government and our supplier Enact to look at ways to expand that service”.