€121 million in Government funding was invested in Ireland’s sustainable energy transition last year according to the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland’s (SEAI) annual achievements statement published today. This investment included €90 million into building energy retrofits which underpinned €185 million in this rapidly growing sector that will be vital to achieving Ireland’s climate action ambitions.
William Walsh, SEAI Chief Executive said:
“2020 was an extraordinarily difficult year for society and a challenging year for the economy. In spite of this we continued to see the commitment of citizens, communities, businesses and the public sector to climate action and making meaningful changes to their energy use. As an organisation SEAI had to respond and adapt to ensure we could continue to support this work and deliver the support they needed. We are very proud of the achievements across our programmes, many of which grew. The response from the business community was particularly encouraging with a fantastic reaction to our new online Energy Academy. We also maintained our policy analysis and advice supports across Government, helping to underpin the ambitions of the Programme for Government with robust insights and evidence.”
Among the most significant achievements in 2020 were:
- 20,700 homes and 240 community and commercial facilities upgraded
- 4,843 new electric vehicles and 3,523 home charger installations supported
- Over €8 million provided towards 90 public building retrofits
- 2,200 subscribers to new online Energy Academy for small businesses launched mid-year
- Support committed to 85 new Exeed projects and 14 assets certified to IS399
- Over €5 million invested in renewable and ocean energy research, development, and demonstration projects
- Energy data, modelling and policy analysis to Government in areas including National Energy and Climate Plan, national heat study, renewable electricity supports and energy user behavioural economics
- Technology advice published in the areas of retrofit codes of practice, building regulations, and biomass technologies
“Without doubt, our biggest challenge was how the public health restrictions effectively halted momentum in home energy retrofits. Protecting those most at risk and vulnerable was our priority, which meant suspending vital free services for much of the year. Unfortunately, now at the start of 2021, we find ourselves in a similar position. However, in response to the substantial budget increase allocated by Government to SEAI, we are gearing up our services to help Ireland accelerate its climate action trajectory. The early focus is on ramping up our capacity as the National Retrofit Delivery Body, increasing the volume and depth of retrofits to achieve the half million BER B2 target.”
Article was originally published by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland. The SEAI is funded by the Government of Ireland through the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications.