Government awards three-year contract to non-profit energy advice group, which will subcontract the running of the call centre to outsourcer Careline

The Department of Energy & Climate Change is to spend £13 million on a new information service that will support households, businesses and the public sector in their take-up of measures from the government's various energy efficiency initiatives, including the Green Deal.

The Energy Saving Trust – a non-profit organisation – won the contract, which covers the provision of a call centre and online support services for three years. The Trust will be responsible for handling queries on Green Deal initiatives and providing energy saving advice.

A spokesperson from the Energy Saving Trust said the company has taken on Careline Services as a subcontractor to provide the call centre service, and that the deal was the Trust's first outsourcing agreement in its 20-year history.

In the contract award notice, DECC said it is expecting increasing demand for information on energy saving measures in the lead-up to the launch of the Green Deal later this year. The new call centre and web portal will be fully operational by then, DECC said, but will initially go live on 1 April.

The contract notice was unclear on whether the Energy Saving Trust would also be required to provide the web advice portal. "No decision has yet been taken on whether these pages will be developed and operated by government or whether the supplier of the call centre will also be asked to supply the web advice," DECC said.