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The Public Calls For Green Home Renovations

Katie Jensen
Nov 12, 2021
Green Home

79% of people would renovate their homes to make them more energy efficient if financial and administrative support is available.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • A new report by ROCKWOOL Group and Cambridge Econometrics indicates a clear path to greener buildings and shows strong support from the public to renovate their homes.
  • Currently, buildings are responsible for 40% of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, 36% in the EU, and 42% in the United Kingdom.
  • 79% of people would renovate their homes to make them more energy efficient if financial and administrative support is available, whereas 73% support mandatory energy efficient improvements.
  • The largest motivating factor for improving energy efficiency was cheaper energy bills for two-thirds of respondents (62%), saying they would make changes if it meant saving money on bills.

A new report by ROCKWOOL Group and Cambridge Econometrics indicates a clear path to greener buildings and shows strong support from the public to renovate their homes accordingly if adequate financial and administrative support is available.

Currently, buildings are responsible for 40% of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, 36% in the EU, and 42% in the United Kingdom. A global survey encompassing 14,000 people from Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, the United Kingdom and the United States confirms the public appetite for more energy efficient buildings and more government fit-for-repurpose renovation programs. 

Data from the global survey shows that 79% of people would renovate their homes to make them more energy efficient if financial and administrative support is available, whereas 73% support mandatory energy efficient improvements. Over 60% believe it is our social responsibility to make our homes climate friendly, given the same amount of support is available. 

"It may be a cliché, but it is also true – the cheapest, cleanest and safest energy is that which we do not use,” said ROCKWOOL Group CEO Jens Birgersson. “Global leaders have to remember that ideas are cheap, but energy is expensive. If we prioritise renovation, we send a clear message that we are investing in the future of people and our planet. And that is a winning formula that we can act on now.”

The new data forms part of the report by Cambridge Econometrics on behalf of ROCKWOOL Group, detailing the challenges of instituting renovation programs and exploring solutions to overcome them. 

In the report, 'Unlocking the Benefits of Building Renovation', the groups urge policymakers to develop long-term renovation programs that manufacturers need to plan production capacity and properly train more installers. One suggestion is to team up with banks to combine public-grants and low-interest loans, making it easier for homeowners to apply for subsidies and find qualified workers. 

“Renovating the built environment is a key challenge on the road to decarbonising our economies,” said Jon Stenning, associate director at Cambridge Econometrics. “The consumer poll carried out for this report shows that there is substantial consumer appetite for retrofitting, but that much more must be done to match up financing with renovation projects. Well-designed policy can play a major role in bringing the whole value chain together, ensuring that resources are well-targeted and help to build up capacity and interest at a local level to ensure that the benefits of energy retrofits can be realised.”

The largest motivating factor for improving energy efficiency was cheaper energy bills for two-thirds of respondents (62%), saying they would make changes if it meant saving money on bills. On the other hand, cheaper mortgages for more energy efficient homes did not interest pollers with only 16% saying it would be a motivating factor to making improvements. Additionally, a fifth of respondents said they feared poor-quality installation as a contributing factor to not wanting their home to be energy efficient. 

The report stresses that governments already have available funding they could make accessible to homeowners. This is clearly a priority for most homeowners with 51% citing costs as a main barrier to making renovations and 53% believing the government needs to provide support for home improvements in the form of grants or loans. 

 

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