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Victims Of Green Deal Should Blame Ed Davey

January 11, 2019

By Paul Homewood


From the Mail:




John Wotherspoon was promised that his new energy-efficient solar panels and boiler would not cost him a penny.

The £3,000 combi boiler and £5,000 panels would ‘pay for themselves’ through the savings he’d make on his energy bills, he was told.

But over the past five years, the retired builder’s bills have soared and he is now burdened with a debt that he will not pay off until he is well into his 90s.

John is just one of thousands of homeowners who say they were sold a lie when they signed up to the Government’s flagship energy-saving scheme.

The Green Deal was hailed as the ‘biggest home improvement programme since the Second World War’ when it was launched by the Government in 2013.

It promised homeowners solar panels, insulation and new boilers, with no up-front cost. Customers would need to take out a loan, but they were assured that the repayments would be no more than the savings they’d make on their energy bills.

So if a customer’s bill was £1,200 a year, they would pay no more than that, and any savings generated would be used to cover the Green Deal repayments.

The problem was that this was based on a typical household’s energy usage, and many homeowners who used less than average have ended up with higher bills.

On top of this, the loans were tied to the property, rather than the individual, which means homeowners could struggle to sell their house in the future.

The multi-million pound scheme was dropped by the Government after just two years following low uptake and was described by MPs as a ‘complete fiasco’.

But the flopped scheme has left a legacy of thousands of households lumbered with high-interest loans that they will be paying for decades to come….

Many homeowners also complained that they did not know exactly what they were signing up to, had been oversold the benefits and had no idea they would be locked into repaying debt — with interest rates between 7.9 per cent and 10 per cent APR — over 25 years.

Others complained that they were not profiting from the excess energy generated by their panels, while others said their panels did not work at all.


While the focus of the article is on a few cowboy firms, the real guilt lies with government, which continually peddled the lie that the cost of Green Deal loans would be no more than savings on energy bills.

Below is an extract taken from Govt’s Green Deal website:



As has already been noted, this promise is only based on estimated savings, which may bear no resemblance to reality.

Furthermore, the loan debt may be spread over 25 years, long after a new boiler or solar panels have been scrapped, and subject to high rates of interest.

It has been obvious from the start that the economics of energy saving schemes simply do not stack up. That is why the Green Deal has been such a flop from the beginning. Most people did the number crunching themselves and and quickly realised that it made no sense to commit to thousands of pounds of debt, when the potential savings were so tiny.

The example in the Mail of John Wotherspoon is a classic example. He was paying £100/month for gas and electricity, a typical bill and similar to mine in fact.

I would guess that maybe a third of his bill is for heating, as opposed to cooking, hot water and power for appliances. In other words around £400 a year. How much of this could be saved by a new boiler, insulation and so on? £100 maybe?

So on what planet would it be worthwhile paying out £3000 for a new boiler, which he presumably did not need. Interest at 10% would be triple any likely savings. And given that the boiler might only last ten years, you would need to save £300 a year to break even, even with zero interest.

Mr Wotherspoon’s Green Deal loan is costing him £2.63 a day, or £960 a year, and appears to be spread over 25 years. This makes a total of £24000.

Even allowing for the solar panels reducing electricity bills by £100 or so a year, the scheme would clearly be a non starter.


As I say, most people can see this for themselves immediately. Unfortunately others took the government’s word at face value, and assumed they would not be worse off.

While the Coalition Government was responsible for the introduction of the scheme in 2013, special mention needs to be about Ed Davey, who pushed it through while in charge of DECC.

Not for the first time, government’s obsession with climate change has cost ordinary people large amounts of money.

  1. January 11, 2019 2:45 pm

    This sounds like mis-selling similar to PPI, which the banks have been forced to repay by the £billions.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      January 12, 2019 1:51 pm

      Not completely since the banks are paying for their errors but who is paying for the government’s errors – oh, yes, us, the general public. There would also be a mistaken trust in the government as many still think they are competent and honest – but then many still think the BBC is a reputable broadcaster and something to treasure.

  2. CheshireRed permalink
    January 11, 2019 3:06 pm

    Straight-up malfeasance by the government. Taxpayers will (rightly) carry the can to bail out householders who were stitched up.

    Ed Davey will of course retain his Knighthood.

  3. January 11, 2019 3:35 pm

    Anybody who signs up to any deal promoted by the Government deserves what they get. I don’t trust anything coming out of the establishment; in fact I would avoid it like the plague and do the opposite (smart meters, EVs anyone?)

    • keith permalink
      January 12, 2019 11:22 am

      You are quite right there, every single thing the Government and our incompetent civil servants touch turns into an utter mess and fiasco.

      • Dave Ward permalink
        January 12, 2019 12:22 pm

        Ronald Regan used to like quoting the “Nine most terrifying words in the English language”

        “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help”

        Nothing has changed in the 3 decades since…

  4. Derek Buxton permalink
    January 11, 2019 3:40 pm

    Ah, the “Green Deal”, at the time I had contacted my Lib-Dim MP to complain about the ridiculous prices of Energy. I received a letter and a copy of their Policy Paper 109. I still have the copy and it was the first time I had seen the “zero Carbon” attitude. All about Green jobs and more green work for all, sheer B/S and I told him so. This was to a large extent Camorons doing, he put them in power on the climate change front and now we are the sufferors. Unfortunately, the current apology for a government are no better and are still in the lying game at our expence!

  5. Peter Yarnall permalink
    January 11, 2019 3:52 pm

    Sub contracted by a sub contracted company, cowboys turned up at my then 86 yr. old mum’s house, showed her a badly photocopied sheet informing her of her free “Green Deal” loft insulation, then commenced ripping out her existing linsulation. Everything on the floor of the loft was placed precariously on the open cold water tank. In laying the new insulation, the cowboys brought down the plaster in all 3 bedrooms, put feet through one ceiling leaving all 3 bedrooms in need of re plastering and redecoration.
    Four years later, a badly bent stop cock in the cold water tank eventually failed. Result? More decorating.
    Grrrrrrr een Deal? Death to ALL EnvironMENTALists!

  6. Up2snuff permalink
    January 11, 2019 4:21 pm

    We do.

    And quite a lot of other people, too.

  7. Harry Passfield permalink
    January 11, 2019 4:40 pm

    And which energy company is Davey a consultant for now?

  8. Harry Passfield permalink
    January 11, 2019 4:48 pm

    ◾Mongoose Energy appointed Davey as chairman in September 2015.[130][131]
    ◾Davey set up an independent consultancy in September 2015 to provide advice on energy and climate change.[130]
    ◾In January 2016 Davey was appointed as a part-time consultant to MHP Communications, the public relations and lobbying firm representing EDF Energy.[130] Davey was criticised by press commentators for the potential conflict of interest between his previous role as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change and his role at MHP. As Secretary of State Davey awarded EDF the contract to build a new nuclear plant at Hinkley Point in Somerset.[132][133]
    ◾Davey’s appointment as Global Partner and non-Executive director of private equity investor Nord Engine Capital was announced in February 2016.[130][134]

  9. January 11, 2019 5:41 pm

    Ed Davey, speaking at the Liberal Democrat Party Conference in Glasgow, 2013:

    “Liberal Democrats, we know that seeing the environment and the economy together is crucial. It’s why Liberal Democrats believe our green policies are central to economic recovery. The facts are with us – £29 billion of investment already secured for renewable energy, supporting 30,000 green jobs, green jobs in every corner of the UK. More than 18,000 in England, nearly 2,000 in Wales and more than 9,000 here in Scotland. The Green Investment Bank – £2.3 billion invested in its first five months alone. Our Energy Bill – building the world’s first low-carbon electricity market, with more than 200,000 green jobs by 2020.

    But we have had to fight every step of the way. Take our Liberal Democrat achievement – getting a decarbonisation target into law, a clean energy target, a world first. The Conservatives were not keen. But we fought and we won. And I had to battle hard to get another radical green idea into the Energy Bill – electricity demand reduction. For the Energy Bill I inherited was great for investment in more green electricity supply but weak on cutting electricity demand – the real greenest approach. So I fought and won. Now there will be new incentives to cut electricity use, just as our new policy, Zero Carbon Britain, calls for. And, conference, to fast-track this, I’m pleased you are the first to hear my announcement of a new £20 million pilot – the first ever in Britain – companies being paid for saving energy, not wasting it. [Audience applause.]

    And these new green markets we’re creating, to cut energy demand, include our Green Deal. Now you may have heard reports claiming it’s not working. But look at the facts. Nearly 60,000 assessments in its first five months. And more than 70% of them have had, or are looking at, getting Green Deal measures installed. Yes, it can be difficult, building a new green market. But the Green Deal was never meant to be a quick fix. We’re building this not for a few years but for a few decades. And so my challenge to the Conservatives is this. Do you want this to be the greenest government ever, or not? I know the Tory Party is split on this. But colleagues, the climate can’t wait for Tory Party unity. [Audience applause.]”

    • Dave Ward permalink
      January 12, 2019 12:30 pm

      “New incentives to cut electricity use”

      A polite way of saying “Make it so expensive that most customers* HAVE NO CHOICE but to use less”.

      * Virtue signalling Greens & Liberal/Lefties excepted, of course…

  10. Athelstan permalink
    January 11, 2019 7:07 pm

    To ye all and anyone who signed up to that designed by eejits its feckless scheme ‘the green deal’ – I’m sorry but I’m finding it very, very difficult to summon a nanogram of any sympathy. when you expect ‘free stuff’ and off the backs of the rest of us poor dupes – your venality and avarice deserves only my utter disdain.

    As for PotatoED – he requires and fully deserves; something unrepeatable stuck up his unmentionables and a collective action, suing for every penny he owns.

    • The Man at the Back permalink
      January 11, 2019 9:49 pm

      Athelstan – don’t hold back mate – tell us what you feel.

    • Dave Ward permalink
      January 12, 2019 12:33 pm

      “Something unrepeatable stuck up his unmentionables”

      Only the other day I somehow found myself discussing the subject of being assaulted by Pineapples…

  11. Rowland P permalink
    January 12, 2019 3:23 am

    Comments I’ve received from a couple of people who’ve got solar panels is that they are benefitting positively from them and are very happy with their lot.

    • January 12, 2019 6:26 am

      They should be happy, those of who don’t have them are paying for them!

    • Chilli permalink
      January 13, 2019 11:58 am

      Yup – if you signed up early enough they offered 45p/KWH feed-in tariff for everything generated , in addition to the 12p/KWH reduction in your own bill for whatever solar output you used yourself. All paid for by inflating the price for everyone else without solar panels.

  12. Silverback permalink
    January 12, 2019 2:05 pm

    I’ve never understood why people with solar panels don’t offer extension leads to neighbours on sunny days to help them cut their carbon emissions and hence save the planet.

  13. Susan Crosthwaite permalink
    January 15, 2019 5:53 pm

    You may be interested in this peer reviewed publication from:

    Mariana Alves-Pereira, Bruce Rapley, Huub Bakker and Rachel Summers (January 9th 2019). Acoustics and Biological Structures [Working Title], IntechOpen, DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.82761. Available from:

    I am pleased to announced that our chapter on “Acoustics and Biological Structures” has been published.

    It is open-access.

    Downloads count, so please download document directly from the site. — Thank you!

    Warm regards,

    Mariana Alves-Pereira, Ph.D.


    Susan Crosthwaite



    M: +44(0)7860 873343

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