4 Stakeholders for Energy Efficiency and Microgeneration
4.1 Chart 1 identifies the range of stakeholders who will be involved around the delivery of energy efficiency and microgeneration related work. This is obviously an extensive list and illustrates the range of stakeholders who would be involved. There will be various inter-relationships between the stakeholders, however adding these on to the diagram would make this even more complex.
4.2 Chart 1 places stakeholders into six broad categories which are outlined below:
- Government - ranging from EU to local authorities, setting policy and legislation.
- Clients - who will commission and benefit from installing energy efficiency and microgeneration measures.
- Companies - who will design and install and maintain the measures.
- Awards & Accreditation - development of training programmes and quality assurance of workforce competence.
- Training Providers - delivery of awards and accreditation to the workforce
- Influencers - range of organisations that have an interest and will be able to influence skills, training, standards and delivery of measures.
4.3 Each of these stakeholders will drive the approach to energy efficiency and microgeneration in different ways and there are intrinsic links between them. One example would be the introduction of Feed in Tariffs ( FIT) earlier this year by the UK Government which requires installations to be carried out by accredited Microgeneration Certification Scheme ( MCS) installers. Clients who are looking to benefit from the FIT will therefore commission work from companies that have MCS accreditation. Companies will look for training and skills development to meet MCS Installer standards, which will have been developed by the range of Influencing bodies, such as SSCs, along with Awards and Accreditation organisations.
4.4 All stakeholder groups will interact with each other; however the main drivers come from two groups, Government, in terms of policy and legislation and Clients in terms of the actual demand creating business opportunities for companies.
4.5 In setting out its EEAP, the Scottish Government is leading the way in detailing how it will go about meeting the statutory greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. Examples set out in the EEAP are;
- developing powers to enforce energy efficiency standards in the private sector
- looking at energy efficiency standards beyond the Scottish Quality Housing Standard ( SQHS)
- introducing improved energy efficiency measures for extensions, conversions and alterations
- maximising the benefit for Scotland from the Green Deal.
4.6 Government legislation will shape the agenda and provide impetus for future energy efficiency and microgeneration measures, however it is the level and speed of uptake from clients that will play a large part in driving future opportunities.
4.7 Assessing the level of client demand is problematic at this point in time because significant elements of legislation are currently in development, such as the Energy Bill . Although the legislative push will largely come from regulatory measures such as building regulations, incentives such as Feed in Tariffs ( FIT), Renewable Heat Incentive ( RHI) and Green Deal will help stimulate demand, but many of these initiatives are still at a formative stage, hence the uncertainty about future levels of demand.
4.8 The main gains in reducing greenhouse gas emissions will come from client demand amongst private householders looking to improve the energy efficiency of their homes, as private householders account for around 65% of all Scottish housing. The introduction of FIT aims to incentivise homeowners to install microgeneration through receiving a direct reduction in their energy payments in addition to payment for surplus energy that is generated and supplied back to the national grid. It is anticipated that the RHI will operate in a similar vein.
4.9 The Green Deal will operate in a different manner as it will allow homeowners access to finance to install energy efficiency measures which will be offset against savings in energy bills. However the same principle still applies in that Green Deal will aim to incentivise demand, albeit in a less direct manner to either the FIT or RHI.
4.10 Assessing the future demand aspect and the scale of the challenge around increasing consumer demand is illustrated by recent ConstructionSkills' research  which notes that " It will be a long drawn out process to persuade large numbers of customers to adopt renewable energy and to date across the UK consumers have been slow to take up energy efficiency measures" (ConstructionSkills, pg 26)
4.11 The widespread view is that over the next ten years " low carbon skills will have to be fully embedded into the mainstream UK economy"  to meet emission reduction targets. In the context of the built environment, this balance between legislative push and demand pull will be two key drivers that influence how energy efficiency and microgeneration skills are embedded.
Case study: Fyne Initiatives (Source; ConstructionSkills)
Fyne Initiatives is the commercial subsidiary of Fyne Homes, a Registered Social Landlord managing in excess of 1400 houses in Bute, Cowal, Mid Argyll and Kintyre and also provides opportunities for low cost home ownership via the shared equity scheme, LIFT. It has built Scotland's first accredited 'Passivhaus' (or Passive House), a home that's annual running costs amounts to the equivalent of using around three car tanks of diesel, with the principle behind the Passivhaus design being a 'low energy' home that consumes a fraction of the energy used by a standard house whilst not compromising on comfort. The Fyne Initiatives Passivhaus is a terraced, two bedroom house completed in April 2010 which is part of a development of 14 new low energy homes overlooking the beautiful Firth of Clyde in Dunoon, named 'Tigh-Na-Cladach' (house by the shore).
The criteria set out by the Passivhaus Institute in Darmstadt, Germany insists that the total energy used in space heating, including energy for appliances and domestic hot water, is less than 120 kWh/m2/ year. The high level of air tightness and 'passive' features including orientation of the property means that the heating requirement is reduced to the point that there is no longer a need for a conventional heating system. The overall heating requirement for the house is just 1600 kWh/year, approximately a tenth of what an average traditional house uses. Solar thermal panels were installed to further reduce energy bill for hot water by over 50%.
Fyne Initiative's director, Peter McDonald, says:
"We have always aimed to build low energy buildings and provide the most sustainable solutions for future generations. Our commitment to develop a physical asset base of housing for communities is matched by our desire to develop sustainable communities. We are about more than just building houses we strive to improve the community for everyone. We have a specific interest in environmental sustainability, recognising the potential for sustainability and the valuable environmental assets within our area of operation.
This development has proven that affordable housing does not preclude sustainability or energy efficiency. Achieving Passivhaus certification is not an easy task and we couldn't have done it without the expertise of our experienced Architect, Gokay Deveci and our outstanding Dunoon based contractor John Brown (Strone) Ltd. We are proud to be the first to reach the standards in Scotland and lead the way for improved standards for affordable and social housing in the UK.
We were prompted down this route on the back of the Government's agenda to reduce CO 2 emissions 42% by 2020. There have been challenges along the way although not insurmountable through working with like-minded contractors. The main challenge was meeting the rigorous standards required to obtain accreditation on a limited budget and the resulting learning curve for both the Design team and Contractor.
Our advice to other small and medium sized construction companies thinking about whether to embrace the low carbon agenda, is to concentrate on the provision of well insulated and air tight properties that significantly reduce the building's energy requirements. We believe this is preferable to focusing solely on renewable devices that need specialist installation and maintenance."