The suspension of the Salix Finance scheme could put the public sector at a disadvantage ahead of the launch of the CRC, reports Envido.
Online PR News – 26-March-2010 – – The hugely popular green loan scheme, operated by Salix Finance and designed to help public sector organisations invest in energy efficiency projects, has been effectively closed to new applicants after all available funds were allocated.
Salix Finance announced earlier this month that it had successfully allocated the £57m Salix Energy Efficiency Loans (SEELS) fund awards to 1,439 energy efficiency projects across 223 organisations, saving an estimated 95,000 tonnes of carbon emissions a year in the process.
The money has been used to support a wide range of energy efficiency projects, including the installation of energy efficient lighting systems, the roll out of building insulation and the deployment of combined heat and power systems at a host of public sector sites such as hospitals, schools and council offices.
A separate £95m "recycling" fund with interest free loans offered by Salix Finance to public sector bodies for projects where they could guarantee match-funding has also been fully allocated. Salix Finance will continue to work with those organisations that had already accessed the £95m "recycling" fund.
Russell Lerman, Managing Director at Envido said “Salix Finance funds have proven that they are effective at enhancing energy efficiency and cutting carbon emissions. The fund enables public sector clients to reinvest their savings into new energy efficiency projects; this process continues until no further work can be identified."
The suspension of the Salix Finance scheme leaves public sector in disadvantage
Some public sector managers expressed their frustration that funding is no longer available from Salix Finance. They said that with the interest-free loans still available to support energy efficiency projects in the private sector through the Carbon Trust, the suspension of the Salix Finance scheme could put the public sector at a disadvantage as it prepares to compete alongside private firms in the energy saving league tables that will be produced through the government's CRC scheme.
Salix Finance had been privately hoping that the funds would be topped up as part of yesterday's budget following the Chancellor announcement last year of over £50m in funding for the Salix Finance scheme. However, no fresh funding was delivered in yesterday's budget meaning the interest-free loans scheme is awaiting the results before it can confirm when and if new loans can be allocated. Salix Finance said that "there is now no indication that any further funding will be forthcoming until April 2011 at the earliest.”