SEAI Announces €30 Million Community Energy Fund for 2017
The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) announced on Tuesday, November 6, that it will offer €30 million in grant supports for community energy projects next year. This represents a 50% increase in funding from the 2016 grant levels – an additional €10 million.
CEO of SEAI Jim Gannon said: “For 2017 we are particularly interested to hear from smaller communities, with smaller projects, that may only be starting out on their sustainable energy journey. We are also providing additional incentives to encourage multiple upgrades in homes that achieve very high performance. All communities with an interest in advancing Ireland’s transition to sustainable energy should contact us to see how we can help – with grant support or simply advice. We will be running workshops nationwide for interested community groups over the coming weeks”.
SEAI’s Better Energy Communities programme supports new approaches to achieving energy efficiency. The programme focusses on improving the energy efficiency of Ireland’s building stock, supporting the use of renewable energy and helping communities complete energy improvements in a more efficient and cost effective way by clustering buildings under umbrella projects.
Over the past five years SEAI has provided €85 million support to 300 community energy efficiency projects. As a result, €170 million has been invested in energy efficiency upgrades for over 15,000 homes.
Marking the announcement, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten said: “By supporting community energy projects for homeowners, communities and private sector organisations we can demonstrate to everybody the real and practical benefits of energy efficiency. It also reduces the amount of money we spend on imported fossil fuels and instead ensures that this money supports local employment throughout the country.”