On 22 April 2010 the Rudd Government withdrew its 19 February 2010 proposal to launch the insulation component of its Renewable Energy Bonus Scheme (REBS) on 1 June next, the replacement for its unsuccessful Home Insulation Program (HIP).
In its place, the Minister Assisting the Minister for Climate Change & Energy Efficiency, Greg Combet, has announced a proposal to launch a Federal Government's Home Insulation Safety Plan (HISP) to help restore confidence and address the impact that the termination of the HIP has had on the industry.
As at Monday 26 July 2010 there has been no announcement as to the starting date for the HISP.
Minister Combet says a key to success of the HISP will be the participation of long-standing and reputable companies in the industry, such as ACIMA 70 manufacturing & Associate Members, and other Australian firms that participated in the HIP.
Under the HISP, safety inspections of a minimum of 150,000 homes that had non-foil insulation installed under the HIP will be carried out.
In addition to these inspections, any household that has safety concerns with installations under the HIP can request an inspection. The Government is committed to inspecting as many homes as are necessary according to an ongoing risk assessment process.
Inspectors will be able to undertake simple remediation work, for example, the fitting of downlight covers where required. The cost of this safety remediation work will be borne by the Government.
These HISP participating companies will be subject to strict safety criteria. Firms that did insulation installations under HIP may only qualify if they satisfy these criteria. This includes a requirement that the participating firms were compliant under the HIP, and a commitment that they stand behind the quality of the insulation product used, and the quality and safety of the installations that they and their subcontractors carried out under the HIP.
The capacity for long-standing, reputable insulation industry firms, such as ACIMA members nationwide, to participate in this large scale inspection program will be a vital boost for those firms and their workers, and help restore industry confidence.
Until the new inspection program is in place, the current arrangements enable householders who have safety concerns to ring and request a safety inspection through the Safety Hotline on 131 792, which will be carried out as soon as possible.
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