SEAI awards €28m through Community Energy Grant Scheme

22 Sep 2020211 Views

Image: © Eliane/Stock.adobe.com

This investment will deliver sustainable energy upgrades to 39 community projects across Ireland.

Today (22 September), Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Eamon Ryan, TD, announced the 39 projects that are set to receive grant funding of €28m under the Community Energy Grant Scheme.

The grants, which are administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), will support projects with a total investment value of almost €74m.

‘We are supporting people to improve their homes and buildings so they will be more comfortable and waste less energy’
– EAMON RYAN

This investment will deliver energy upgrades to nearly 1,500 homes, community buildings and commercial properties throughout the country. The successful communities will benefit from warmer and healthier buildings, lower energy bills and reduced CO2 emissions.

“Through this scheme, the Government is helping to deliver three important and very beneficial outcomes,” Ryan said. “We are supporting people to improve their homes and buildings so they will be more comfortable and waste less energy.

“We are expanding retrofit work, creating new green sustainable jobs in communities across Ireland and helping to grow companies. We are also cutting emissions, thereby delivering a better environment for all of us. I intend to use funding from the recently announced July stimulus package to expand the communities scheme so we can further grow the retrofit sector and benefit many more people in the months and years ahead.”

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The funding includes €4.3m specifically for projects delivering aggregated home retrofit upgrades. There are 14 such projects involved, comprising a total of 348 homes.

William Walsh, CEO of SEAI, said: “The Government’s Climate Action Plan recognises the central role of communities in achieving our climate action ambitions. SEAI is working with hundreds of energy communities across the country, providing them with the knowledge and the means to plan their own ambitious low-carbon pathway.

“Government-funded grants are a key support for communities ready to invest in sustainable energy solutions to meet their needs. The achievements of these communities can be replicated, drawing more citizens into Ireland’s clean energy transition.”

Ryan and Walsh made the announcement this morning at the Fair Play Café in Ringsend. The café is one of the projects that received funding through this initiative in 2019 to create a more sustainable community space with a café, childcare facility and garden centre. Net profits from the café are distributed to different projects in Ireland and abroad.

The Climate Action Plan is aiming to achieve a 30pc reduction in emissions in Ireland by 2030, with 70pc of the country’s electricity generated from renewable sources within the next decade.

Kelly Earley is a journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

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