A HOME improvement incentive scheme was announced yesterday which, if implemented in full, will lead to 1 million of the 1.7 million homes in the State being retrofitted to increase energy efficiency.
Minister for Energy Eamon Ryan yesterday announced the home energy savings scheme for existing homes, designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce energy use.
The scheme is to be introduced on a pilot basis with an initial investment of EUR5 million available in four areas - North Tipperary, Co Limerick, Co Clare and Dundalk. Some 2,000 homes will be retro-fitted in this first phase, with State financial contributions of up to EUR2,600 per home available.
However, when the scheme is widened to a nationwide level in 2009, some EUR100 million will be made available for retro-fitting incentives, said Mr Ryan.
The scheme will target older housing as these dwellings are most in need of retro-fitting.
Under the scheme, for an outlay of EUR100, the householder will be entitled to have their home assessed by an adviser who will give the house a building energy rating. Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI) will pay the balance of the approximate EUR350 cost.
The adviser will then set out a schedule of work that may include attic insulation; wall insulation; low-emission double glazing, heating control or replacement of the boiler. The Government will then pay up to 30 per cent of the cost of these works to a maximum of EUR2,500.
According to SEI estimates, the average household will then save up to EUR500 in their energy bills every year.