Free green energy advice service launched for recession hit small firms

A global renewable energy specialist is launching a new free UK-wide advice service for recession battered businesses explaining how going green can save money.

Wirral based Stiebel Eltron said the service will include undertaking a free ‘energy efficiency’ survey of any premises in the UK. The report will examine the heat loss and heat demands of the building and detail a set of recommendations to cut costs and slash energy bills.

“There is a misconception that installing green energy products is expensive,” said Stiebel Eltron’s UK managing director Mark McManus. “However it is vital business owners realise that going green and becoming energy efficient during the recession can actually save cash. Renewable energy heating products can pay for themselves within a matter of years of being installed. Moreover, because renewable energy uses no fossil fuels homeowners and businesses are not at the mercy of soaring oil and gas prices.”

Mr McManus said the advice service would further give free advice on what tax breaks and grants are available to help meet the cost of going green.

“There are a number of grants, tax breaks and Government incentives to help people pay for renewable energy products,” he said. “It is vital to take advantage of these during the recession. VAT on renewable energy products is just 5pc and there is the Enhanced Capital Allowance Scheme. Through this scheme businesses can write off the whole of the capital cost of their investment in green friendly technologies against their taxable profits. Moreover there are grant schemes available through Business Link and regional development agencies which can pay for up to half the cost of buying renewable products.”

For further details on Stiebel Eltron’s advice service contact its UK head office on Wirral International Business Park tel: 0151 346 2300. Phonelines will be manned 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday.

Stiebel Eltron primarily manufacturers ground source heat pumps and air source heat pumps. Ground source heat pumps transfers heat from the ground into a building to provide heating and hot water. Air source heat pumps absorb heat from outside to heat buildings and provide hot water. Neither pump uses oil or gas.

Renewable energy background

In June 2008 the prime minister unveiled a £100bn renewable energy plan he described as a “Green Revolution” and “the most dramatic change in energy policy since the advent of nuclear power.” He said he wanted to reach the EU imposed target of producing 20pc of the country’s energy from renewable sources by 2020, in 2006 just 1.5pc of UK energy was produced by renewable sources. This will require £100bn of private investment which the Government plans to encourage with grants and financial incentives. Mr Brown said that by 2020 renewable energy would account for 30pc of electricity supply, 14pc of heat supply and up to 10pc of transport fuel.

The Government renewable energy strategy estimates that 160,000 new jobs will be created by the ‘green revolution’ in the UK by 2020.

In addition to this target the Government has set its own target of reducing the UK’s carbon emissions by 60pc by 2050.

The average UK household produces over 5 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year with space and water heating accounting for more than 73pc of this.

At least 70pc of all non-domestic buildings will still be in use by 2050 so there is a huge market for converting existing buildings to renewable energy.

Heating is responsible for almost half of UK energy use and carbon emissions. The Government is therefore keen to encourage the use of air source and ground source heat pumps along with solar hot water systems.

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