People, property and energy efficiency

Laurence Arbuckle from Bryson Energy; Angie Porter and Tracey Patten, Strabane Community Project; and the Housing Executive’s Sustainable Development Manager, Robert Clements, celebrate the five millionth litre of home heating oil delivered through the Oil Buying Club Scheme initiative to over 4,900 households.

The Housing Executive is Northern Ireland’s comprehensive housing authority, offering a range of services to people living in socially rented, privately rented and owner occupied accommodation. It is the only social housing landlord in Northern Ireland named in the UK Top 50 social housing landlords.

The Housing Executive is the Home Energy Conservation Authority (HECA) for Northern Ireland. This role requires an annual progress report of energy efficiency across all residential sectors1 and to identify and promote measures which are practical, cost effective and likely to result in significant improvement in energy efficiency.

With the key issue of Northern Ireland having the highest level of fuel poverty in the UK2 the need to improve energy efficiency is still prevalent. The Housing Executive, in collaboration with local councils, manage the delivery of the Department for Communities (DfC) Affordable Warmth Scheme totalling £20.5 million across over 5,000 private sector households and manage the DfC Boiler Replacement for over 3,500 owner occupied dwellings last year. As a landlord, the Housing Executive invested over £21 million across 4,760 households with energy efficient heating systems and double glazing last year.

The Housing Executive also promotes the installation of natural gas where available in a bid to reduce the carbon dioxide emissions via its annual Heating Programme. Natural gas has now reached Strabane with the ‘Gas to the West’ project. In the east of Northern Ireland, firmus Energy and Phoenix Natural Gas continue to develop the gas network where they have respective distribution licences.

The Housing Executive is keen to utilise cost effective renewables in the context of first reducing energy demand and a fabric first solution. In summer 2016, The Housing Executive completed a scheme in partnership with Saliis Ltd to install solar PV panels into 1,000 homes using private finance based on the “rent a roof” model, which generates electricity from daylight. The private company recoups its investment and makes a profit over 20 years from the sale of Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs) and the export of any electricity, which tenants do not use, that goes back into the grid. This scheme was the first large scale solar PV project for residential properties in Northern Ireland. Assuming tenants use 50 per cent of the electricity produced by the panels they will save around £200 on their annual bills. The Housing Executive is presently carrying out a study into the first full year of this installation to demonstrate evidence base of savings in household energy bills.

Energy Saving Week 30 October – 3 November 2017

Between 30 October and 3 November the Housing Executive will support the Energy Saving Week initiative across Northern Ireland to get the message out to save money by making households more energy efficient via simple steps and/or availing of energy efficient grants. During the week, the aim will be to promote the energy efficiency message including savings tips, advice, benefit checks, and switch and save.

 

 

 

 

Housing Executive

2 Adelaide Street, Belfast, BT2 8PB

Tel: 03448 920 900

Web: www.nihe.gov.uk

Twitter: @nihecommunity

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