i33: Retrofitting using local/regional businesses

6 supporter
It is indeed important to retrofit old housing stock and it is indeed very sensitive to take a district level approach to this where possible, but should we not use rather local businesses situated in Bradford or at least in the North in order to strengthen the local green economy? If we use a company, based in Netherlands, well that's great for Netherlands but if we want to make a just green transition we need to create jobs, local jobs, in the green sector. My proposal is therefore to indeed take a more systematic, strategic approach to retrofitting but doing so in collaboration with local businesses, who can provide services in retrofitting and future-proofing, i.e. insulation, installation of low-carbon heating systems, installation of solar panels. 

If we want to take people onboard it is important they see the opportunities coming from the decarbonisation transition. Often new green jobs are promised and it is important that this promise is actually fulfilled, that's why it is important to use local businesses and companies whenever possible, to create new jobs and expand the green sector. Everything that Energiesprong is offering can be also provided by local businesses (e.g. see here https://www.renewableenergyhub.co.uk/heat-pump-ashp-gshp-ground-and-air-source-installers-in-bradford.html), maybe not as nicely integrated, but we need to give local businesses also the opportunities to learn and improve their services, by creating demand for more integrated solutions. 

Response to Suggestions
  • Link to Green Job Centre: Absolutely love the idea, I think linking these two would be brilliant. People could be trained on the job. We would only make sure we have highly skilled people, who can train and supervise. This may mean to attract high-skilled professionals to the region. 
  • Manufacturing of panels in Bradford: I like the idea to manufacture the panels in Bradford. I guess that could be a compromise, using EnergieSprong's innovation but also creating local green jobs. 
  • Integrated approach: If this is lacking, then how can we incentivise companies to provide such full package service? Why is this missing? Is this lack of skill? So do we need to provide that training, which links back to the point of linking it a Green Job Centre. Maybe the council can work together with local companies and create a coordination hub, so that they can work together to deliver on the various parts of a full package? 

Suggestions for improvement (2)

written and rated by the supportes of this initiative to improve the proposal and its reasons

Link to skills training and apprenticeships

collective rating: 
| implemented: 
Could this retrofitting by local firms be linked in with the green jobs training centre and council support to offer apprenticeships to build skills and experience with these technologies locally?

Local vs Energysprong

collective rating: 
| implemented: 
I think there should be opportunities for local business to benefit from building refurbishment. I dont see this is incompatible with taking the EnergySprong approach. It is difficult to say what impact employing EnergySprong on a large scale would be in the UK. I understand the panels for the project in Nottingham were all manufactured in the UK. As there is only one manufactures so far, it is clear that large scale deployment would need more manufacturers involved at the same time as growing the market - why not manufacture in Bradford? It has to be said that there are many approaches to achieving better thermal performance (not just energysprong and Passivhaus) and so a diverse range of skills and planning expertise is needed. I suggest that one of the things most lacking are businesses that are able to take on integration of a range of approaches. i.e deliver a complete package to home owners and deliver projects over short timescales. Fabric refurbishment (energy demand reduction) is the key to protecting home owners/tennants from rising unit energy costs over the long term - whatever the heat delivery technology. However achieving deep refurbishment is complex and dissruptive.

Issue #20

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