New regulations will be rolled out in four years’ time to force homeowners in Scotland to meet new energy efficiency standards – with a backstop of 2033 for transforming all buildings.
In the first-ever ministerial statement in the Scottish Parliament by a Greens MSP, Patrick Harvie announced there will be certain trigger points for buildings to meet EPC band C standards after the regulations are set out in 2025 – which could include a change of tenancy when a property is empty, at point of sale, when major refurbishment is carried out or when replacement or installation of a new heating system takes place.
A new green heat finance task force has been set up to “identify innovative solutions to maximising private sector investment” and “find new ways to support the upfront costs”, Mr Harvie added.
The announcement comes after a new heating and buildings strategy was published by the Scottish Government, which Mr Harvie said was “a pathway to decarbonise our homes”.
The Scottish Government strategy states that “an appropriate grace period” may be required for some of the triggers for homes to reach EPC band C standards “so as not to place an undue burden on individuals and in some cases achieve changes more cost-effectively”.
It has been estimated that the transition to zero emissions heat could support around 16,400 jobs across the economy in 2030.
To maintain progress towards statutory emission reduction targets, the Scottish Government say that this must scale up to provide a total of at least 124,000 systems installed between 2021 and 2026. The installation rate would also need to peak at over 200,000 new systems per annum in the late-2020s.