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The Hon Peter Garrett MP
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts

Green Loans Program

Media release
9 February 2010

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Yesterday I instructed the Secretary of my Department to immediately implement an independent external process of inquiry specifically in relation to all contractual agreements and procurement processes entered into during the final design and implementation of the Green Loans program.

That inquiry will build on a process already underway to immediately audit the assessor accreditation process and adherence to the terms of the Protocol for Assessor Accrediting Organisations between the Department and the accrediting organisation. This is being conducted by external audit firm PricewaterhouseCoopers. The Department is also urgently working to address other specific concerns including call centre wait times and resourcing.

It’s clear that some elements of the program are not working as effectively as they should. In particular, it is clear there is room for improvement in relation to the call centre for assessor and householder bookings as well as to speed up the issuing of household assessment reports.

The Green Loans is a popular program with more than 205,000 household assessments booked to date and over 140,000 assessments already completed. Many people have also undergone training to qualify as a home sustainability assessor.

The Green Loans program offers the opportunity for households to get advice on the best, most effective ways to improve the energy efficiency of their homes. It is about helping households save money and reduce their environmental impact.

It also offers the chance for people to gain new skills in conducting household sustainability assessments.

The Green Loans program is well on the way to delivering on the commitment to 360,000 household assessments but I will not hesitate to make any changes necessary to ensure its effective rollout.

Commonwealth of Australia