Thursday, 24 January 2019

Questions (50)

Fergus O'Dowd

Question:

50. Deputy Fergus O'Dowd asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the schemes available for homes and business to reduce carbon emitted through buildings; and the number that have benefitted to date. [3180/19]

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Written answers (Question to Communications)

The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) is funded by my Department to administer energy efficiency grant schemes for both homes and businesses. Details of these grants are provided below and further information is available on SEAI’s website https://www.seai.ie/. Homes:

- A range of grants are available to householders to suit their circumstances and scale of work they wish to undertake.

- Better Energy Homes provides a financial incentive (typically covering 30% of the cost of works) to private homeowners who wish to improve the energy performance of their homes.

- Better Energy Warmer Homes Scheme provides a range of energy efficiency measures free of charge to low income households vulnerable to energy poverty who meet the defined eligibility criteria.

- Better Energy Communities encourages and supports community based partnerships to carry out energy efficiency upgrades to mixed projects of homes, community facilities and businesses within a local community.

- The Warmth and Wellbeing Pilot Scheme is a joint energy, social and health policy initiative aimed at validating the health impacts of improved energy efficiency in a home. The pilot scheme was established in HSE Community Healthcare Organisation (CHO) 7, specifically in Dublin 8, 10, 12, 22 & 24.

- The Deep Retrofit Pilot Scheme is available to homeowners who want to upgrade their house to an A BER while availing of grant support of up to 50%.

The majority of these grants are available to homeowners whose properties were built before 2006. Since the introduction of these grants nearly 400,000 homes across the country have received an energy efficiency upgrade, representing nearly one home in five across the country.

Businesses:

- The Excellence in Energy Efficient Design (EXEED) Certified Program focuses on lifecycle energy performance in the industrial, commercial and public sectors. It works by using grant offers to incentivise businesses or organisations to look at projects from the design stage, and consider the most efficient process when commissioning or designing a new project, process or asset. This scheme is applicable to any sector or organisation, and to projects of any scale or complexity. The EXEED Grant Scheme can provide grant support of up to €500,000. In 2018 56 projects have received grant funding through this program.

- The SEAI SME Programmes supports businesses to tackle their energy costs. SEAI have worked with over 3,000 businesses of all sizes and types, and delivered savings of up to 30% for participants through the programmes. Two pilot schemes operated in 2017 and 2018:

- Dairy Farm Grant Scheme provided in collaboration with Teagasc offered grants of 40% to support the installation of efficient vacuum and milk pump technology which can significantly reduce energy and costs to farmers – with 116 benefiting from this scheme.

- The Smart Lighting Pilot Scheme encourages and supports businesses to upgrade their lighting by providing grants of up to 30% which enables businesses to permanently reduce their future energy use and spend on lighting. To date 256 SMEs have availed of this scheme.