Monday, August 24, 2009

Don't WANT to be sceptical about this but the Carbon Trust has a terrible reputation for NOT delivering what it promises.

Between 2002 and 2004 I spent £thousands with Action Energy - a subsidiary of Carbon Trust - on a business plan for implementing a retrofit low energy consumption refurbishment for my pub which, if it had come off, would have made The Sun and Doves the world's first Carbon Neutral pub (and likely it would have been the first Carbon Positive pub in the world: i.e. it would generate more energy than it consumes). It was not to be because of the esoteric demands and expectations of the 'Innovation' programme the Carbon Trust was running at the time. Typically in a normal grant round there would be £10,000,000 - TEN MILLION QUID - available for distribution to schemes that would illustrate (it's called 'dissemanation' - a wide audience would see the practical value of changing to low energy light bulbs, for example, and buy loads of them to save on fuel bills) the real value of thinking about reducing energy consumption in the home and work environment without making uncomfortable personal lifestyle sacrifices.

It was not to be. The grant rounds were always well oversubscribed by enthusiastic innovators wanting to save the planet but the Carbon Trust, in its infinite and utterly obscure wisdom, saw fit NOT to issue the funds available on grounds that the schemes presented (at huge research and development cost) were not suitable for the criteria they set out for application. I know three Energy Consultants who worked for Action Energy who left their jobs in disgust after their grant application work on behalf of their forward thinking clients was rejected out of hand.

In the grant round I was involved with 90% of the available grant money was not allocated to projects.

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