Senior figures warn Green Deal could have ‘dramatic’ effect on insulation industry

The government’s flagship Green Deal risks “killing the insulation industry overnight”, senior industry figures have warned.

John Sinfield, managing director for manufacturer Knauf in northern Europe, said the predicted collapse in loft and cavity wall insulation installations, revealed in Building last week, would also stop manufacturers investing in the UK.

Last week Building obtained figures from the Department of Energy and Climate Change, predicting that the volume of loft insulation installations would fall 93% under the Green Deal, with cavity wall insulation installations falling 70%.

Sinfield said: “Based on this data, you would kill the loft and cavity wall insulation industries overnight. You’ll see a lot of insulation companies shutting down […] At the moment my boss will look to invest in Germany, in France, instead of the UK, as it’s got this big cloud hanging over it.”

Michael Ankers, chief executive of the Construction Products Association, said: “This will seriously harm confidence and a lot of skills will be lost. The impact will be dramatic.”

Questioned about Building’s data on Channel 4 News this week, climate change minister Greg Barker said he believed the public would get excited about the range of home improvement available under the Green Deal: “New windows, a new front door, solid wall insulation that will put a new face on your home.”