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Only three sustainable homes built in UK so far

Gordon Brown's dream of "eco-towns" with tens of thousands of homes powered by wind and solar power has failed to grip the public's imagination. Officials have confirmed that only three low-carbon homes are being built in the UK.

The Prime Minister made the plan for 100,000 sustainable homes a key element of his pitch for the Labour Party leadership last summer. But individuals have failed to match the Government's enthusiasm for cutting household emissions.

Only three households have taken advantage of a tax-break for all new zero-carbon homes, the Treasury revealed last week.

The Treasury minister, Jane Kennedy, said the Government expects the number of applications to increase "as more properties eligible to claim the relief go on the market".