Green Deal homes at risk of overheating

Grant Prior 6 years ago
Share

Industry experts are warning that temperatures in homes insulated under the Green Deal scheme could soar to dangerously high levels.

Homes in urban areas are most at risk from problems during summer heatwaves.

Prof Chris Goodier, of Loughborough University’s department of civil and building engineering, told the BBC that the risk of overheating had been overlooked in the “big rush to insulate and make homes airtight”.

He said: “Overheating is like the little boy at the back of the class waving his hand. It is forgotten about because the other challenges are so big.

“If you are in the wrong type of house, facing the wrong way, in the wrong street and you don’t deal with heat in the right way, it is a problem.

“Particularly for the elderly. They are going to suffer. Suffering means they are going to die from overheating.”

A report by the professor’s team warned: “Green Deal measures could create new problems in the future, with inappropriately insulated properties experiencing poor indoor air quality and significant summer overheating.”

It said the increased likelihood of summer heatwaves could lead to a rise in heat-related deaths from 2,000 to 5,000 per year by 2080 “if action was not taken”.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change said it has now issued fresh guidance to Green Deal suppliers to help reduce potential risk from installing energy efficiency measures.

In a statement to the BBC, the department said: “The real problem facing our nation’s draughty homes is a lack of adequate insulation and energy efficiency in the colder months.

“The Green Deal is giving households a new way to fund improvements, helping them protect themselves against rising energy bills and keep homes warm and cosy in the autumn and winter.

“If energy efficiency measures are installed appropriately, overheating should not be a common problem and there’s guidance available for those involved in the Green Deal.”

It added: “Decc is working with experts and other government departments to understand the potential risk of overheating in retrofitted homes and ensure that the energy efficiency supply chain, including those working within the Green Deal, are aware and guidance is provided on homes which are most likely to be vulnerable and what steps could be taken to minimise any risk of overheating.”

Wetherby Building Systems, a leading provider of external wall insulation systems, has hit back at the overheating claims.

Bob Deane, managing director of Wetherby said: “The way insulation works is very simple; as well as keeping heat in, it also keeps heat out.

“Homes that have been fitted with external wall insulation are actually in a better position during hot spells, as the heat will not be able to transfer through the walls to heat the property, so these homes will in fact stay cooler.

“This BBC report has only added to the problem of the slow take-up of Green Deal initiatives.”

Only four people have signed up to the Green Deal since it was launched six months ago but Decc says that number is expected to increase with more finance in place.

In total it said there had been 38,259 Green Deal assessments, where customers are given initial advice about what energy improvements they might be eligible for.

Of those, 241 households have confirmed they would like to proceed with work.

 

 

Latest news

Multiplex set for massive Elephant & Castle win

Contractor tipped to beat off competition from Mace for one of year's biggest building awards
3 hours ago

Opinion: Now time for Boris to prove his worth

Prime Minister must stick to promises as Labour needs a radical rethink
32 mins ago

Balfour Beatty creates new technology chief role

Chris Johnson promoted to new strategic role reporting directly to Leo Quinn
1 hour ago

Eutopia Homes advances debut £105m Salford scheme

Former Essential Living boss lodges plans for first of three schemes worth £365m
1 hour ago

Costain profits slashed after road row ruling

Profit forecasts halved following legal U-turn over Welsh road dispute
23 hours ago

Balfour Beatty to exceed 2019 profit forecast

US probe into falsification of maintenance records extended to all 21 US air force bases
24 hours ago

40 jobs axed as Leeds firm RDF Building collapses

Third east coast contractor sinks in less than 10 days
24 hours ago

Dramatic crane collapse video shows site damage

Footage reveals aftermath of Kingston crane failure
1 day ago

Plans submitted for London ‘hanging gardens’ tower

36-storey 50 Fenchurch Street tower will feature huge green wall
1 day ago

Balfour gets go-ahead to restart Midland Met hospital

£267m contract award to restart job hit by Carillion collapse and funding wrangles
2 days ago

Vinci clinches Staffordshire Uni £40m skills hub

Work will start this spring on the Catalyst building in Stoke on Trent
1 day ago

McAlpine wins November contracts league race

BAM stakes claim as new favourite to be crowned 2019's greatest work winner
2 days ago

Tower crane in London collapses in high winds

Jib snaps on residential site in Kingston
2 days ago

Costain offloads Spanish golf courses for a loss

Costain to book £8.9m loss from sale of golf course and marina
2 days ago

Yorkshire Water names final AMP7 framework winners

Nine firms to share £650m clean and waste pipe spend
2 days ago

Balfour Beatty extolled as Britain’s most admired contractor

Business chiefs judge major contractors to find most admired firms
2 days ago

Amey chief executive Andy Milner exits

Amanda Fisher, MD of FM business, takes role of acting CEO
3 days ago

London council starts £520m housing upkeep contest

Lambeth to overhaul housing maintenance with new contractor line-up
2 days ago

£340m northern new-build framework winners

Six firms secure affordable housing major project lot in Yorkshire and Humberside region
3 days ago

Bad weather bogs down construction output

Construction suffers biggest monthly output fall for nearly two years
3 days ago

Boost your online presence – join the Enquirer Directory

Site for suppliers and buyers showcases products, services and latest stories
2 years ago

86 jobs cut as North East civils firm goes under

Joyce Construction & Civils is latest casualty of tightening market
4 days ago

Sewer breach sweeps away three workers on Tideway site

Court fines Thames Water Utilities £300,000 after Greenwich accident
3 days ago

Plans lodged for £30m Teesside indoor ski centre

Three-storey complex to be built at Middlesbrough Dock in Middlehaven
3 days ago

Willmott Dixon wins £18m historic London school rebuild

Historic St Dunstan’s College Lewisham site tol be redeveloped
3 days ago

Train narrowly misses trapped concrete mixer on crossing

Amey site staff beckoned truck onto crossing as warning lights flashed
3 days ago

Plans for Manchester Metropolitan Institute of Sport

Eric Wright has drawn up demolition and construction management plans
4 days ago

Clugston debt rumoured at over £40m

150 immediate job cuts with 262 staff retained to help sale of contracts
4 days ago

Contractors rally to help Clugston staff facing the axe

Trade body calls on firms to offer laid off staff jobs in run up to Christmas
7 days ago

Kier suspends worker accused of racist football gesture

Fan arrested after Manchester derby incident is a Kier employee
5 days ago

Contractor services