Public Housing Stock (Micro-renewables)

Question Time — Scottish Executive — Finance and Public Services and Communities – in the Scottish Parliament at 2:15 pm on 16th March 2006.

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Photo of Sylvia Jackson Sylvia Jackson Labour 2:15 pm, 16th March 2006

To ask the Scottish Executive what steps will be taken to ensure that micro-renewables are introduced into the public housing stock to reduce fuel bills and benefit the environment. (S2O-9299)

Photo of Johann Lamont Johann Lamont Labour

The Scottish community and householder renewables initiative, established in 2002, promotes the development of new community and household renewable energy projects in Scotland and has supported a number of community housing projects.

In addition, the Executive is developing a pilot study to explore what role renewables technologies can play in keeping down fuel costs with a view to including those technologies in the central heating programme.

Photo of Sylvia Jackson Sylvia Jackson Labour

The recent successful climate change and renewable energy seminar in Stirling shows that there is considerable interest in micro-renewables. Is the minister considering further pilots in this area? Is it possible to meet her to discuss how to maximise the take-up of micro-renewables not only in local authority and community ownership housing but in private housing and in future as well as existing developments?

Photo of Johann Lamont Johann Lamont Labour

Yes. We are producing a planning advice note on micro-renewables, which is to be published in April. An interim review of the Scottish community and householder renewables initiative will consider how it can be taken forward. We will ensure that our energy-efficiency strategy is fully informed by that work.

Education and interest must be built on at an individual level to let people know the kinds of things that they can do, but we must also consider constantly how we can make a difference in our range of responsibilities. I will be particularly interested to discuss with Dr Jackson the role that she sees for Communities Scotland and others in driving micro-renewables into public and social housing. I am more than happy to meet her to discuss that.