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Solar Panels Boosting London’s Social Housing

By Katie Anderson on October 5, 2011

More than 1,500 social housing tenants in London have benefited from the installation of solar photovoltaic panels since the launch of the Capital’s RE:NEW scheme.

During trials, the programme helped residents to achieve savings of up to £154 a year on their energy and water bills. More than 1,700 homes in five boroughs including Lewisham and Dagenham benefited from home improvements.

The Mayor of London, the London Development Agency (LDA) and London’s boroughs and councils have teamed up with the Energy Saving Trust (EST) to develop the RE:NEW scheme, which is now into its second stage of development. Recently expanded to take in housing association homes in nine other boroughs, tenants in Wandsworth, Hounslow, Croydon and Tower Hamlets will soon be able to enjoy reduced energy bills once energy saving measures have been implemented, including cavity wall insulation, solar water heating and loft insulation.

“One of our main aims is to ensure that householders across the nation are empowered with the right tools to help them to cut their energy bills ,” said Philip Sellwood, chief executive of the Energy Saving Trust.

“RE:NEW offers them this opportunity and we’re very excited about the potential of this scheme.”

The retrofitting scheme has been introduced to promote energy efficiency in London’s housing stock, and to help tackle fuel poverty in lower income households. By March, the scheme is set to have helped 55,000 homes.