Limerick Institute of Technology, Limerick, 6th Sept 07 – Mr. Tony Killeen T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Environment Heritage and Local Government and Communication Energy and Natural Resources today stated that the significant uptake of various renewable energy technologies in the Midwest Region would continue to be supported by the Government.
Launching the 3rd National Renewable Energy Heating Conference in Limerick, Minister Killeen confirmed that Phase 2 of the hugely successful Greener Homes Scheme would be launched on 1st October 2007.
Under the Greener Homes Scheme, hundreds of homeowners across Clare, Limerick and North Tipperary have received grants worth several thousand Euro towards the purchase of wood chip stoves and boilers, solar energy panels and pumps for collecting underground heat. These grants are intended to allow recipients to replace conventional non-renewable energy sources.
“Phase 1 of Greener Homes was concluded this week and has been remarkably successful with 16,000 applications for grants now approved. The number of registered renewable energy installers here in the Midwest alone has increased dramatically and there has been a ten-fold increase in products available on the Irish market, which is a very significant development”, explained the Clare T.D.
Minister Killeen said, “In tandem with this initiative my colleague, the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government John Gormley, will soon be introducing regulations requiring the use of renewable energy systems in new buildings. In stimulating the market for domestic renewable energy technologies, through grant supports and a new regulatory regime, we hope to create an environment in which renewable heat products are an integral part of the domestic heat sector.”
The Clare T.D. added that Bioenergy continued to play an integral role in the development of renewable heat technologies.
“Bioenergy is an indigenous energy source which not only provides sustainable energy solutions, but also addresses competitiveness, and provides opportunities for rural development”, he said.
Minister Killeen continued, “The Bioenergy Action Plan establishes a range of supports across the supply chain, which includes incentives for planting and harvesting wood energy products, and demand let supports the ReHeat and Greener Homes grants schemes, which are driving consumer demand. Locally, the Clare Wood Energy Project demonstrates the significant benefits of an integrated approach to market development.”
Meanwhile, Minister Killeen congratulated the Meelick-based Renewable Energy Skillsnet Accel Project for hosting the 3rd National Renewable Energy Heating Conference at Limerick Institute of Technology. He indicated that the organisation had contributed greatly to the promotion of renewable energy technologies, as well as the training of renewables installers.
“We are seeing the emergence of an energy service sector, which can mitigate the perceived risks by consumers by providing fixed price contracts and maintaining ownership of the relevant technology. This is a welcome development, which also encourages increased efficiency in energy supply and use. I would like to compliment the Renewable Energy Skillsnet Accel Project for their work in this area”, concluded Minister Killeen.
Notes to Editor:
- Tony Killeen T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Environment Heritage and Local Government and Communication Energy and Natural Resources with special responsibility for Environment and Energy, is available for interview and further comment on 0035387-2525304. Alternatively please contact Mark Dunphy of Dunphy Public Relations on 00353868534900 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- High resolution image of Minister Killeen available on request