Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser

Energy scheme warmly praised


Neil Gray has praised the impact of a national scheme which has helped more than 380 of his constituen­ts to save money on their energy bills during the past six years.

The Airdrie MSP highlighte­d figures revealed in the annual report of fuel poverty service Warmer Homes Scotland, showing that the local residents had saved an average of £261.

Energy improvemen­ts are identified through the programme, with installati­ons such as new central heating systems and renewable technologi­es including air source heat pumps then being arranged with the aim of making properties warmer and more affordable to heat.

Mr Gray said:“i’m delighted to know that the scheme has helped many of my constituen­ts save money on their fuel bills and would encourage everyone to check if they are eligible to receive help under the scheme.

“The improvemen­ts it offers could make a real difference this winter and in the years to come.”

With the report also noting Warmer Homes’wider benefits including positive outcomes for everyone from householde­rs to the NHS and Scottish Government, he added:“i’m pleased the scheme has supported so many people to be more comfortabl­e in their homes and it’s great to learn about positive benefits on health, wellbeing and day-to-day living.”

The scheme is run by Warmworks Scotland and is a joint venture between the Energy Saving Trust, Everwarm and Changework­s, helping households who are struggling with the cost of high energy bills.

More informatio­n on the programme is available by contacting Home Energy Scotland free on 0808 808 2282, whose advisers will then refer eligible customers to the Warmer Homes scheme.

Recent research by campaigner­s Energy Action Scotland revealed that more than one in five Lanarkshir­e residents are living in fuel poverty – spending more than 10 per cent of their net income on energy costs.

The figure is 20 per cent for North Lanarkshir­e and 22 per cent for South Lanarkshir­e. And following October’s increase to electricit­y and gas bills, consumers are being warned of another price cap rise in April.

Energy Action Scotland say: “Continued volatility in wholesale energy markets could push average energy bills up by more than £700 to £2000 a year.”

Chief executive Frazer Scott added:“this problem is only likely to get worse – we estimate that as prices rocket, over 100,000 more households will seriously struggle to heat their homes.”

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