Time to unlock the huge potential - SEAI
THE Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland wants to help "unlock the huge potential" that exists across Ireland for local positive action.
That's according to Chief Executive, Brian Motherway, as the SEAI joins the 'Get Involved' initiative as main sponsors.
Mr Motherway, pictured, said: "Local communities all over Ireland are working together to improve their own lives, create local jobs and protect the environment.
"Of the many challenges we face, our dependence on imported, expensive and polluting fossil fuels is one we are proving we can tackle successfully."
Mr Motherway explained that last year alone the SEAI's 'Better Energy Communities' grants supported 84 community energy projects countrywide.
All were aimed at reducing energy use and keeping money in local communities.
The Chief Executive said: "The communities involved undertook work to reduce the energy use of 3,500 homes and 300 community buildings and businesses.
"The homes and buildings are now warmer, more comfortable, healthier and less costly to run.
"At the same time, this work diverts money away from importing fossil fuels and into local employment.
"These projects relied on local partnerships and the help of local people, businesses and organisations who were will to roll up their sleeves and get involved."
Mr Motherway said the SEAI recognised the huge benefits that can come from community based projects.
The Chief Executive said this year the SEAI had again issued a 'Better Energy Communities' call for communities to apply to a fund of €13.5 million for energy efficiency.
Mr Motherway added: "We're looking for local partnerships coming together to plan action that will make a real difference in their communities.
"This year's programme is all about innovative approaches to get more upgrades to even more homes and community buildings.
"We want to build on last year's success and we are hugely encouraged by the creativity and enthusiasm we have seen so far."