SOCIAL Development Minister Nelson McCausland has announced a £12million boiler replacement scheme to improve energy efficiency in 16,000 homes across Northern Ireland.
The scheme, which will launch in September this year, will be open to owner occupiers who earn less than £40,000 and with a inefficient boiler of at least 15 years old.
The grant of up to £1,000 dependent on total gross income, is available to assist in replacing an inefficient boiler for a more energy efficient condensing oil or gas boiler; switching from oil to gas; or switching to a wood pellet boiler.
Those who think they may be eligible can call now on 0300 200 7874 to find out more and check if they can apply on 0300 200 7874 or http://www.nidirect.gov.uk
Minister McCausland, said: “This funding, provided by the Northern Ireland Executive, will help us to make a real difference in 16,000 homes across Northern Ireland, and some of the most vulnerable in our communities. This is a real example of the devolution delivering for the people of Northern Ireland.
“In last year’s pilot scheme targeting older people, almost 1,700 boilers were replaced in homes from Belleek to Ballyclare, some delivering a 30% increase in efficiency. I am delighted that I am now able to provide a fully extended scheme which will reach to every corner of Northern Ireland.
“In addition, some 640 local installers and suppliers carried out the work involved in the pilot programme. These installers were chosen by householders themselves, a key element of the scheme which will be replicated this time around and I hope this will continue to give a boost to local businesses.
“This scheme, alongside a new Renewable Heat Premium Payment scheme announced today my colleague Arlene Foster, further underlines the Executive’s commitment to supporting people in reducing their energy costs and maximising the energy efficiency of their homes.”
Applications to the scheme which will be run by the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, will be invited from September 2012. Information on the application process will be published as part of the scheme launch.
The Minister concluded: “In the coming weeks, I hope to be announcing some additional funding for the scheme, which will be part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the European Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland. This could see an additional 16,000 people benefit from the grant available.”