New HECA guidance available

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Revised guidance under the Home Energy Conservation Act 1995 (HECA) to English local authorities with housing responsibilities was published on 26 July 2012.

It sets out requirements for those authorities to report on the measures they propose to take to significantly improve the energy efficiency of all the residential accommodation in their areas. The guidance links with the delivery of the Green Deal by local authorities.

The document explains in how to set up a carbon plan, gives examples of councils who are leading the way, and provides an outline example of a report. It also includes DECC’s offer to local authorities:

“The Memorandum of Understanding between DECC and the LGA envisages both parties working ‘together to help and encourage all councils to take firm action – underpinned by locally set ambitious targets and indicators’.

To support authorities in the early stages of the Green Deal/ECO DECC will, as far as it reasonably can:
• seek to use the Green Deal launch incentives in a way that supports local authorities’ offers to their residents which maximise street by street roll out;
• help promote local authorities’ identified plans to Green Deal Providers and energy suppliers – further reports and progress reports will be attractive to Green Deal Providers and businesses seeking to invest as well as energy companies seeking to deliver their ECO targets;
• provide some tools for authorities to meet their obligations under the Act, e.g. tracking their emissions levels over time and helping identify particular areas to target; and
• work with the LGA and the Department for Communities and Local Government (‘DCLG’) to provide good practice guidance for local authorities.

DECC will also continue to work with the local authorities’ national Carbon Action Network to support delivery through the Act”.

The guidance can be downloaded from the DECC website.