British 'green deal' must win consumer confidence, say Velux

Velux has warned that if the British government's 'green deal' fails to win the confidence of consumers it could be a "kick in the teeth" for the energy efficiency retrofit market. The green deal will allow homeowners to pay for energy upgrades via loans paid back through their energy bills. 

Brian Motherway named new chief executive of SEAI

Dr Brian Motherway has been appointed chief executive officer of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). Motherway joined SEAI in 2006 and has recently held the role of chief operations officer. He holds bachelor and master's degrees in chemical engineering and a PhD in Sociology.

Government launches public consultation on building control

The government has launched a public consultation on its proposed new building control regulations. Environment minister Phil Hogan announced the new rules last year following the high profile failure of the Priory Hall development in Dublin to meet fire regulations, but details have just been released.

Goverment launches first green public procurement action plan

custom_house_dublin_01.jpg
Environment minister Phil Hogan and public expenditure and reform minister Brendan Howlin today launched Green Tenders, Ireland's first green public procurement action plan. The aim of the plan is to encourage public authorities to purchase more sustainable products and services.

The action plan stresses that green public procurement can be a "driver for innovation" and "provide a competitive advantage for emerging companies".

Cuts to insulation grants will cost jobs, warns Construct Ireland

bonded_bead.jpg
The government's cuts to its Better Energy grants will cost jobs and make it extremely difficult for Ireland to meet its retrofit and energy reduction targets, green building magazine Construct Ireland has warned.

Following the budget, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland reduced grants for cavity wall insulation from €320 to €350. Grants for internal and external wall insulation were also reduced — previously these were €2,000 and and €4,000 respectively, but now separate rates have been introduced for different house types, with the maximum being €1,800 for internal insulation and €3,600 for external.

Green groups criticse new EU energy efficiency plan

euflag.jpg

Environmental groups have criticised the EU's new Energy Efficiency Directive for failing to mandate member states to make big energy savings over the next decade.

According to the European Commission, the plan will deliver 20% energy savings across the union by 2020. However, Friends of the Earth said the directive would "not make savings to the extent promised, or on the scale needed to fight climate change".

Six-week consultation on green public procurement launched

custom_house_dublin_01.jpg
The government has published its draft national action plan on green public procurement (GPP). Environment minister Phil Hogan said the plan, when finalised later this year, will apply to all personnel involved in procurement across the public sector.

The plan aims to ensure the government purchases sustainable products and services in areas such as construction, energy, food and transport.

Grants for heat pumps and biomass boilers withdrawn

patrabbitte.jpg
The government is withdrawing grant support for heat pumps and biomass boilers and reducing grants for other energy efficiency upgrades as part of its new Better Energy national building upgrade programme.
 
The government has allocated an additional €30m to the programme this year in addition to the €60m set aside in this year's budget. It expects the extra funding to support an additional 2,000 jobs in the retrofit sector in 2011.

CI exclusive: Ryan dismisses reports of energy grant cuts

eamon_ryan.jpg
Government grant schemes for energy upgrade measures such as insulation, heating controls and renewable energy systems are running as normal, energy minister Eamon Ryan TD has told Construct Ireland. The minister said that €99m is set aside for the Greener Homes scheme, Home Energy Saving scheme and Warmer Homes scheme in 2011.

Energy upgrade programmes escape budget cuts

Minister Eamon Ryan
Government subsidies for energy efficiency and renewable energy have come through Budget 2011 unscathed in spite of swinging cuts across the economy.

Energy minister Eamon Ryan TD has announced a budget of €99m for energy upgrading Irish buildings in 2011 as the government ramps up for the launch of the National Energy Retrofit Programme (NERP).

Plan to energy upgrade one million buildings launched

Professor J Owen Lewis, the CEO of The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland headline.jpg
One million residential, public and commercial buildings in Ireland will get energy upgrades by 2020 under the latest national retrofit strategy. A consultation was launched this morning on the plan, which will aim to deliver 8,000 GWh of energy savings between 2011 and 2020.

Government introduces feed-in-tariffs for biomass power

eamon_ryan.jpg
Energy Minister Eamon Ryan yesterday announced the government’s new support price structure for bio-energy. The guaranteed support price will range from 15 cent per kilowatt hour to 8.5 cent an hour depending on the technology deployed.

Irish business leaders back green procurement

g4gsmall.jpg
A new coalition of Irish business leaders has issued an open letter urging the government to leverage the State’s €17bn annual procurement spend to develop the green economy.

The CEOs and managing directors of companies including Siemens Ireland, Airtricity, Ecocem, Glen Dimplex and Bord Gais have signed up to Green for Growth, a coalition calling for the state to commit to buying greener goods and services to keep Ireland competitive domestically and internationally.

Green business leaders to sign open letter to government

green4growth_logosmall.jpg
Green for Growth, a coalition of leading Irish businesses set up to demand strong government leadership on green procurement, will be launched tomorrow, Friday 14 May 2010 in The Annesley Suite, Alexander Hotel, Merrion Square, Dublin 2 at 12pm. The coalition has been organised by Construct Ireland magazine.

Government to introduce carbon windfall tax

eamon_ryan.jpg

Energy minister Eamon Ryan has announced that the government plans to recoup some of the profits big electricity generators have made through the EU's emissions trading scheme.