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Written answers

Thursday, 13 April 2017

Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources

Renewable Energy Projects

Photo of Dara CallearyDara Calleary (Mayo, Fianna Fail)
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324. To ask the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources the amount of funding provided under the capital plan for the renewable heat initiative; the amount spent to date; the progress made to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18791/17]

Photo of Denis NaughtenDenis Naughten (Roscommon-Galway, Independent)
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The introduction of a Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a commitment in the White Paper on Energy and the 2016 Programme for Government and will be the primary support mechanism in the heating sector designed to meet Ireland’s renewable energy obligations. The aim of the RHI is to build on the progress already made in the renewable heating sector and to help reach Ireland’s 12% target by 2020. In 2015, 6.5% of heat was derived from renewable sources in Ireland.

I announced the final public consultation on the design and implementation of the new RHI in January 2017, and I welcome the large volume of submissions received by my Department. All submissions are currently being reviewed and will be used to inform the final design of the scheme.

Ultimately, the final cost of introducing a RHI will be driven, in part, by the final design of the scheme, the renewable heat technologies to be supported and any sustainability and air quality criteria that form part of the new scheme.

I secured €7m for the RHI in the annual capital allocation for my Department for 2017 and there has been no expenditure on the scheme to date.

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