British finance minister Rishi Sunak earmarked 3 billion pounds ($3.75 billion) to improve the energy efficiency of homes and public buildings as part of broader plans to kickstart the economy and support jobs.
Ahead of an announcement on Wednesday of its next moves to soften the hit from the coronavirus lockdown, the finance ministry said households would be given 2 billion pounds in grants — worth up to 5,000 pounds each — to cover two thirds of the costs of insulation and double-glazing of windows.
The poorest families will receive up to 10,000 pounds without having to pay anything, the finance ministry said.
The remaining 1 billion pounds will be spent on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from public-sector buildings.
Sunak is expected to focus Wednesday’s announcement mostly on countering a jump in unemployment — which the Bank of England has said could soar to 1980s levels of around 10% or more.
He has already rushed out an estimated 133 billion pounds ($166 billion) of emergency measures, most of them to try to stem the rise in unemployment.