Energy supplier British Gas has announced it intends to offer a cash incentive to consumers who encourage others to insulate their homes.
Anyone who persuades a low-income friend, family member or neighbour to take up British Gas’ insulation offer could receive a £50 cheque, along with the person who has their home insulated. It is hoped the scheme will help more households cut carbon emissions.
Consumer group Which? welcomed the move and encouraged more energy firms to do likewise. Under the government-backed Carbon Emissions Reduction Target scheme, utilities suppliers are obliged to meet certain objectives and could be fined if they fail to meet them.
“It’s good to see energy companies making an effort to reach vulnerable consumers. Insulation is one of the best ways to reduce energy bills,” said Which? policy adviser Simon Osborn. “Insulating a loft, for example, could trim £175 off energy bills each year.”
Earlier in the week, British Gas announced it had made an operating profit of £522m – equating to around £50 per household – in 2011. Profits were down 30 per cent on 2010, however, following a relatively benign winter.