Kensington and Chelsea Council have launched an innovative new program, believed to be the first in the sector, for its residents in North Kensington, which is helping them keep homes warm and bills down. The pioneering pilot scheme allows people living on the Lancaster West Estate to borrow thermal imaging cameras to help identify cold spots in their homes.
The thermal imaging cameras help residents see for themselves where heat is leaking out of their home. The Council can then offer solutions, such as draft excluders, smart thermostats, and radio reflectors, to improve insulation and ventilation across the estate. Importantly, this information can be used to prioritise inefficient homes within the borough that can be put forward for retrofit works.
The project is part of the Council’s £120m major works programme to upgrade windows and insulation across the estate. It is designed to provide the residents of Lancaster West Estate with the tools to identify problems with heat insulation in their homes, during a time where energy bills have skyrocketed.
Housing and buildings are currently the biggest carbon emitters in the borough, accounting for 80% of carbon emissions. Improving housing heating efficiency will bring the borough closer to its goal of being carbon neutral by 2040, whilst keeping the borough greener, safer, and fairer.
Cllr Kim Taylor Smith, Deputy Leader with responsibility for housing, said:
We’re proud of this pioneering thermal imaging equipment loan scheme which will help us make sure that Lancaster West residents have safe, secure, and warm homes.
The scheme, which is part of a £120m major works programme at Lancaster West to create a modern 21st Century Estate, will help people identify fast fixes in their homes while we roll out our programme of major works across the estate. This all aligns with the Council’s goal of becoming greener, safer and fairer.
It is a great opportunity for the Council to engage with residents and offer them solutions to improve their housing insulation.
The team at the Council, responsible for implementing this, have been shortlisted for four national Unlock Net Zero Awards. These awards recognise and champion progress on the housing sector’s journey to decarbonisation.
This technology, along with further tests, such as pulse testing, which measures airtightness, and value plate exchangers, which measure the transfer of heat inside and outside of the building, help to identify weak spots and demonstrates to both the residents and the council the improvements that are made.
The Council has set out a £120m major works programme to upgrade windows and insulation across the estate as part of its ambitious £400m commitment to upgrading Council homes across the borough. The ambition is for the Council to be carbon neutral by 20230 and for Kensington and Chelsea to be a carbon neutral borough by 2040.