Thursday, 11 July 2019

Questions (752)

Róisín Shortall

Question:

752. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the status of each of the actions outlined in the strategy to combat energy poverty 2016-2019; and if a progress report will be published before the strategy comes to an end later in 2019. [30867/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Communications)

The Strategy to Combat Energy Poverty sets out a number of actions to be taken between 2016 and 2019 to alleviate the burden of energy poverty on the most vulnerable in society.  The strategy focuses on high impact actions which aim to make a real difference to the lives of those in energy poverty. Examples of the good progress made under the strategy include:

- €26.3m funding for the Warmth and Wellbeing Scheme which targets those suffering from chronic health conditions.  To date, this funding has supported over 1,100 energy efficiency upgrades.

- The eligibility criteria for the Warmer Homes Scheme was expanded to capture more people suffering deprivation.  Deeper measures are also now provided under the scheme.  A total of €99.2m has been provided for this scheme between 2016 and 2019 supporting over 20,500 energy efficiency upgrades during that period. 

- €82.3m in funding has been provided to the Better Energy Community Scheme which has supported innovative, community-led initiatives, some of which have helped to address energy poverty.

- The Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) has ensured that competitive energy markets are working for all consumers, including those in, or at risk of, energy poverty.

The recently published Climate Action Plan also commits to reviewing ways to improve energy poverty schemes to target those most in need and to examine options to further increase funding for those schemes.

A review of the implementation of the Strategy to Combat Energy Poverty will be completed when it comes to an end later this year.