Innovative net-zero energy homes to tackle fuel poverty in Exeter

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A groundbreaking project to retrofit energy measures in existing properties to create net-zero energy homes is being piloted in Exeter

The on-going pilot in Chestnut Avenue will deliver a retrofit solution known as ‘Energiesprong’ to six existing council properties.

Energiesprong’s whole house refurbishment performance standard upgrades properties to the very highest energy standards.

Included in the system is a ground source heat pump heating system, insulated wall and roof panels, and photovoltaic roof panels with battery storage facility.

The aim of the project is to create net-zero energy homes that are warm and comfortable for tenants to live in, and deliver reduced energy bills.

Put an end to fuel poverty

Council leader Phil Bialyk, said: “I really welcome this pilot project. Energy bills for residents will be hugely reduced, and that is fantastic. In terms of ending fuel poverty, this is a major step forward.

“Residents living in these houses will have a much better insulated, energy efficient home, and that is exactly what we all need.”

Bialyk also described how energy bills would be reduced by up to 90% for those within the net-zero energy homes.

Bialyk added: “This is one step forward in ending fuel poverty.

“This is just the start of what is a big job… We intend to fit over a period of time all of our homes in Exeter with net-zero systems.”

Net-zero carbon city

It is hoped the move would help contribute to Exeter’s target of becoming a Net-Zero Carbon city by 2030.

Amal Ghusain, lead councillor for equalities, diversity & communities, commented: “This project will create much better conditions inside the house. Things like mould and humidity problems will be taken away, so the atmosphere inside the house will be amazing and healthy.

“So it is about an improvement in health and not just a saving in the pocket and a saving in energy that this work will produce.”

The outcomes of the net-zero energy homes pilot will be evaluated with the intention of looking at strategies that would work for the wider council housing stock.

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