Written answers

Thursday, 14 July 2022

Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine

Agriculture Industry

Photo of Jennifer WhitmoreJennifer Whitmore (Wicklow, Social Democrats)
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905. To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if he will expand on the recently announced proposals for the roll-out of solar panels for farmers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39481/22]

Photo of Charlie McConalogueCharlie McConalogue (Donegal, Fianna Fail)
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My Department currently provides grant aid through the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme (TAMS II) to assist our farmers in maximising their contribution to the production of renewable energy through the installation of Solar PV technology along with battery storage on Irish farms.

Solar energy for on-farm use is grant aided under the Animal Welfare Nutrient Storage and Safety Scheme, Young Farmers Capital Investment Scheme, the Organic Capital Investment Scheme and the Pig and Poultry Investment Scheme measures under TAMS. The solar PV systems grant aided under TAMS includes Solar PV Panels and Solar PV Rechargeable Batteries and Solar Panels for water heating under the Pigs and Poultry scheme. 

To date, some 249 applications for solar panels have been approved under the TAMS scheme.The maximum size of PV panels eligible for grant aid is 62KW for Pig and Poultry Farmers and 11kw for all other applicants. An applicant can install larger, but at their own cost.

It is also proposed that support for renewable energy investments will continue under the new Capital Investment Scheme as part of the CAP Strategic Plan (CSP) submitted to the EU Commission for approval last December.  

My Department is also working closely with Minister Eamon Ryan, whose Department launched the Microgeneration Support Scheme (MSS) in December 2021, which are a suite of new measures which that Department has introduced for renewable production this year.

I will continue to engage with Minister Eamon Ryan and his Department and I am examining all ways to support farmers in this area.


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