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Substantial investment in energy efficiency schemes

Published: Thur, 30 Nov 2017
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Our Sustainable Development Manager Robert Clements reviews the HECA Annual Progress Report 2017
Energy efficiency schemes tackle fuel poverty
The Housing Executive, the Department for Communities and the Northern Ireland Sustainable Energy Programme invested over £52 million in schemes to improve energy efficiency of Northern Ireland households last year.
This figure was released as part of the Housing Executive’s 21st annual Home Energy Conservation Authority (HECA) Progress Report launched today.
The Report records key outputs by the Department for Communities, the Housing Executive and other agencies aimed at improving the energy efficiency of all domestic housing stock across Northern Ireland.
The Housing Executive invested £18million to complete 3,627 heating conversions in its own properties and also invested £3million to provide 1,133 double glazing installations over the same 12 month period. Across the private sector, over £21million of work has been completed to 5,000 homes through the Department for Communities’ Affordable Warmth Scheme.
An additional £2.2million was invested in 3,578 privately owned homes to install new energy efficient boilers from the Department for Communities’ Boiler Replacement Scheme.
The Northern Ireland Sustainable Energy Programme has facilitated £8 million of energy efficiency measures last year in a scheme delivered by a range of organisations and managed by the Energy Saving Trust on behalf of the Utility Regulator.
Speaking at the launch of the HECA Progress Report, the Housing Executive’s Sustainable Development Manager Robert Clements said:
“This year’s investment across the housing sector is a clear indication of the importance placed on making homes more energy efficient across Northern Ireland. Within the Housing Executive substantial investment in both heating conversions and double glazing installation schemes have continued in the last 12 months. 1000 homes were fitted with solar photovoltaic (PV) systems last year, which is providing significant savings to energy bills for households year on year.
"As an organisation, there has been a concerted effort to tackle fuel poverty through a variety of proactive methods which the Housing Executive will be demonstrating through our latest Home Energy Conservation Authority Progress Report”.
Mr Clements added that educating younger generations should be a contributor to understanding the benefits of energy efficiency. 160 primary schools participated in programmes to educate pupils to tackle energy efficiency in their homes. Householders also availed of important energy saving advice. 7,024 households contacted the Bryson Energy Advice Line funded by the Department for Communities to receive advice on a range of energy efficient services.
Through the Housing Executive’s Oil Buying Club Scheme which is facilitated by Bryson Energy, 27 different clubs offer households reduced energy bills by encouraging group purchasing of home heating oil. This scheme has been extremely well received and is expected to continue to provide savings in the future.
Through our ‘HeatSmart’ Programme over 6,000 Housing Executive tenants received advice in collaboration with Bryson Energy on how to make their homes more energy efficient and avoid damp and condensation.