Image: Sophie J. Brown.

The Labour party has launched its Warm Homes for All initiative, which would see a wide scale rollout of renewables and low carbon technologies such as solar PV. 

The £250 billion project would see grants for low income homes, and interest free loans for others established to improve energy domestic efficiency. This will include the installation of solar PV at 1.75 million additional homes around the country by 2030.

Of that £250 billion, £60 billion is to come from direct government subsidies, with the rest paid for through energy savings, Labour has said.   

Labour's shadow business and energy secretary Rebecca Long Bailey MP called the plan one of the “greatest investment projects since we rebuilt Britain’s housing after the Second World War.”

“Labour will offer every household in the UK the chance to bring the future into their homes – upgrading the fabric of their homes with insulation and cutting edge heating systems – tackling both climate change and extortionate bills.

“This project will also create hundreds of thousands of good unionised construction jobs, bringing good work back to areas of the UK the Tories abandoned long ago.”

As well as solar PV, 5.3 million homes would have solar thermal systems and 6.34 million homes would receive heat pumps. The project stands create 250,000 skilled jobs, predominantly in construction and installation. 

The project is to also look to install loft insulation and double glazing in buildings to help make homes more energy efficient. The Labour Party hopes that such measures will help prevent 1,500 deaths from cold and up to 560,000 cases of asthma due to reduced damp.

Furthermore, it will help reduce carbon emissions in the UK, as heating and electricity are responsible for 56% of the countries emissions according to the party’s recent “Thirty by 2030 report“. Under its proposed plan, approximately 50.46Mt CO2e would be saved annually by 2030, reducing the countries emissions by just over 10%. This would be more than all agricultural industry emissions, and 72% of those from cars.

The Leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn said that actions such as those in Warm Homes for All were necessary, as if “we don’t radically change course we face the threat of a hostile and dying planet. But Labour will turn that threat into an opportunity.”

“We will tackle the climate crisis by putting wealth in the hands of the many not the few, with lower bills, more good jobs and better health.

“By investing on a massive scale, we will usher in a Green Industrial Revolution with good, clean jobs that will transform towns, cities and communities that have been held back and neglected for decades.”

The party estimates the project will lead to a £11.54 billion annual saving across the UK by 2030. This is equivalent to an average saving of £417 for low income households.

The Conservative party has attacked the plan, saying that while tackling climate change was vital, “independent experts and even Labour’s own unions say their promises don’t stack up.”

“Jeremy Corbyn’s plans would wreck the economy, putting up bills for hardworking families – and preventing any real progress on climate change.”

Over the weekend, the Conservative party performed a U-turn to ban fracking in the UK. As such, it already seems clear that climate change and energy, in particular renewables such as solar, will play a big role in the coming election.