Sinn Féin spokesperson on Climate Action, Darren O’Rourke TD, has called for the acceleration of shallow retrofits to help cut carbon emissions, as figures from the SEAI show the number attics and cavity walls insulated in 2022 was 88% lower than the number completed in 2011.
The Meath East TD said:
“On average, a home loses 20-30% of its heat through its roof and external walls if they are not properly insulated.
“Insulating roof space and cavity walls are simple, quick measures that can immediately help reduce heat loss from a home, cut household energy bills and reduce carbon emissions.
“Unfortunately, the number of shallow retrofits has fallen off a cliff over the past decade.
“In 2011, even at the height of the economic crisis, 51,577 attic insulations were carried out. However, in 2022 this figure had dropped to just 6,195 according to figures from the SEAI.
“Similarly, cavity wall insulations fell from 41,612 per annum in 2011, to just 4,896 last year.
“This is the low hanging fruit this government is failing to capitalise on to help cut carbon emissions.
“We’ve had a missed decade of investment in this area, which has left people living in cold homes, spending huge amounts on heating and also contributing to our carbon emissions.
“The SEAI have said 500,000 homes would benefit from additional attic and cavity wall insulation, highlighting what a huge, missed opportunity this is.
“Sinn Féin believes accelerating the rollout of attic and cavity wall insulations is the right solution now, given the dire energy situation many people are facing this winter. This is a call echoed by the Climate Change Advisory Council, Friends of the Earth Ireland and others.
“100% grants for attic and wall insulation and removing the administrative burden on households should form part of this plan. Minister Ryan should act immediately on this.”