It’s been years in the planning but with very little fanfare, last month the long-awaited Support Scheme for Renewable Heat was opened in Ireland. FEC Energy participated in an event publicising the new scheme to horticultural business in and around Dublin on 25 September. The event, which was held jointly with Teagasc, EBTech Solutions and WoodCo, also included a nursery visit to an ornamentals nursery who invested in biomass heating several years ago in response to rising oil costs.
The Support Scheme is open for business with an installation grant up to 30% for heat pumps, whilst the scheme is broadly similar to other schemes in the UK the grant support is a slightly different approach. The ongoing operational support element (tariff paid for heat produced) which mirrors the other schemes will be available towards the end of 2018 and will support installations such as biomass boilers and AD plant for a period of 15 years.
Some of the major differences compared to the UK schemes surround the application of the heat to eligible purposes, the Support Scheme has safeguards in place to ensure heat is used appropriately and requires assessment of energy efficiency as part of the support scheme process, with participants required to demonstrate that they have plans in place not only to move to renewable heating but employ energy-saving measures to reduce their reliance on energy use.
It was great to visit a nursery who invested in biomass heating outwith support schemes. The owners were incredibly open and knowledgeable about their system, and the investigations they have made so that the installation works for them. The key lessons provided to the delegates surrounded making sure the building housing the boiler was suitable, having the correct size buffer vessels, the importance of good quality fuel and carrying out regular maintenance. All things that many who have invested in biomass already will find familiar!
The Support Scheme website can be found here – https://www.seai.ie/sustainable-solutions/support-scheme-renewable-/ or for more details about how FEC Energy can help you with your project please give the office a call on +4424 7669 6512.