Wednesday, 21 September 2022
Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment
7. To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he will provide details of the volume, value, and type of grants processed by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, by month during the period January 2022 to August 2022, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46148/22]
I propose to take Questions Nos. 7 and 12 together.
Earlier this year in February, Government announced an enhanced package of measures to support the uptake of home energy upgrades.
-A new National Home Energy Upgrade Scheme providing increased grant levels of up to 50% of the cost of a typical deep retrofit to a B2 BER standard.
-Establishment of a network of registered One Stop Shops to offer a start-to-finish project management service, including access to financing, for home energy upgrades.
-A significant increase in the number of free energy upgrades provided to those at risk of energy poverty alongside changes to the operation of the Warmer Homes Scheme. This includes ensuring the Scheme prioritises those in the worst performing homes first and opening the Scheme for homeowner ‘revisits’ thereby allowing them apply for deeper energy upgrade measures now available under the scheme.
- A special enhanced grant rate, equivalent to 80% of the typical cost, for attic and cavity wall insulation has also been introduced for all households. This will help to urgently reduce energy use as part of the Government’s response to current exceptionally high energy prices.
A total of €267.2 million capital funding was allocated for SEAI residential and community retrofit schemes and the Solar PV scheme in 2022 as part of the Revised Estimates Volume. This allocation was adjusted to €244.2million on foot of the Supplementary Estimate in July for my Department.
The investment this year targets almost 27,000 home energy upgrades, including over 8,600 homes to a BER of B2. The most recent forecast from the SEAI projects that between 26,000-27,000 homes will be completed this year.
Over €92 million has been provided in grant supports across the range of residential and community schemes so far this year.
Figures provided by the SEAI show that to the end of August 13,406 homes have been completed across the residential energy efficiency schemes (up 70% compared to the same period last year) and of these, 4,234 have been upgraded to a post works Building Energy Rating (BER) of B2 or better (up almost 140% compared to the same period last year).
The number of free upgrades provided under the Warmer Homes Scheme each month has more than doubled versus last year. As of the end of August, 2,642 homes have been completed under the Warmer Homes Scheme, and of these 86 have been upgraded to a post works Building Energy Rating (BER) of B2 or better.
In addition, since the announcements in February, demand across the SEAI residential and community retrofit schemes has been exceptionally high with a very significant increase in the number of applications year to date when compared to the same period in 2021. Over 30,000 applications for grant support have been received by the SEAI – a 140% increase on the same period last year and this strong pipeline of projects is translating into delivery for the remainder of this year and into 2023.