Sustainable Energy

Community Based Organisations


Community Based Organisations (CBOs) play a significant role in helping to alleviate fuel poverty by installing energy efficiency measures in low income households throughout the country. Energy Action Ltd. a Dublin based charity, initiated a pilot project on Tory Island 21 years ago whereby it insulated the homes of island residents, and following on from that initiative there are now a total of 28 Community Based Projects delivering a similar service throughout the country.  These CBOs obviously also create employment in their local communities. Currently there are almost 400 people employed in delivering this service throughout the country.

These CBOs deliver the Warmer Homes Scheme. The scheme is funded by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), to assist homes in or at risk of fuel poverty. This free scheme is targeted at vulnerable householders to help make their homes more energy efficient. Householders eligible for this scheme are typically residents of Non-Local Authority Homes, and in receipt of a Fuel Allowance payment (as part of the National Fuel Scheme), or can be referred by bona fide organisations; for example, the Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS), St. Vincent De Paul, Age Action, or by a GP or health professional.

The efficiency measures provided to eligible homes include the following:

• Attic insulation
• Cavity wall insulation where available.
• Draught proofing
• Hot water cylinder Lagging jackets
• Energy saving light bulbs (CFLs)
• Energy Advice

The Government National Energy Action Plan 2009-2020 sets out Government plans and actions to achieve its target 20% energy efficiency savings across the economy by 2020. The plan states:
“Improving Ireland’s energy efficiency is an essential part of Ireland’s sustainable energy policy, and will play a vital role in reducing our dependence of fossil fuels. This policy framework is designed to steer Ireland to a new and sustainable energy future; one that helps us reduce greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs. Efficient energy use directly contributes to security of energy supply, sustainable transport, affordable energy, competitiveness and environmental sustainability.” A key component of this plan is the upgrading of the energy performance of homes occupied by those on low income through the Warmer Homes Scheme.

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