Wednesday, June 5, 2013

€50m investment will see lower bills and warmer homes for 25,000 families

The government today announced a €50m three year energy efficiency investment programme for local authority homes. It is a key part of the Government’s additional €150m capital investment in the economy over 2013-2014 which I flagged earlier here.
Beginning this year the energy insulation measures will target the 25,000 least energy efficient local authority homes. This will result in warmer homes and lower energy bills for thousands of families and will also create more than 1000 jobs in the sector.
The energy efficiency investment is good for jobs, good for tenants and good for the environment. Over the next three years €50m will be invested in improving the energy efficiency of 25,000 local authority homes. This has the capacity to create approximately 1,000 new jobs. It will also sustain the jobs already created in this important sector.

It is estimated that 25,000 local authority houses have very poor energy ratings – an ‘G’ or ‘F’ in terms of BER ratings. This investment will be targeted at those homes and will result in an enhanced energy rating – resulting in lower energy bills and warmer homes for tenants. An annual €400 reduction in heating costs is anticipated for households. The initiative will also see our carbon emissions reduced by some 30,000 tonnes per year – an important contribution to Ireland’s climate change strategy.

In recent years capital funding for energy efficiency has been targeted at vacant properties owned by local authorities. This investment has produced real results, with more than 7,500 properties improved. Many of these units had previously been unavailable for letting, having been vacant for long periods. More than 5,000 such properties have now returned to beneficial use for low-income families.”

This new three year programme will build on that progress. We have an ambitious target of improving 25,000 homes through insulation measures. The insulation works planned can be completed with tenants in situ over a couple of days and it will produce immediate benefits to families.

Details of the allocations for each local authority will be published in the coming weeks.

Contracts will be open to both community-based, not-for-profit providers and commercial energy efficiency contractors.

Planned roll-out will see:
2013 - €10m investment – 5000 homes
2014 - €25m investment – 12,500 homes
2015 - €15m investment – 7,500 homes

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