IFA Renewables Chairman James Murphy has called on Energy Minister Denis Naughten to ring-fence 20% of the energy levy paid by all homeowners, to develop a prosumer strategy which encourages homeowners and farmers to replace their fossil fuels with renewable sources.
James Murphy said, “The current plan of exclusively using this public service obligation levy, as it is known, to support the construction of thousands of large scale wind turbines across our natural landscape is no longer acceptable to rural communities. It has also resulted in the transfer of millions of euros paid by Irish citizens to enrich multi-national energy companies”.
IFA is calling for a clear change in the direction of Ireland’s energy policy. “In a recent submission to Government, IFA has called for 20% of the levy paid by all consumers, which is equivalent to €100m, to be ring-fenced to support the development of farm scale, roof-mounted and farmer led community energy projects”.
The submission has also called for measures including:
- A generation feed-in tariff of 17c/kWh, guaranteed for 20 years and linked to CPI for farm scale and micro-energy projects.
- A 2.5c/kWh premium for renewable projects that include community participation.
- Grid connection and planning preference for community renewable projects.
Concluding James Murphy said, “Society and Government have an obligation to use their best endeavours to address the environmental and renewable obligations, in a fair and balanced way. The development of a prosumer strategy, as proposed by IFA, places the citizen at the centre of future energy needs by making it possible for them to displace fossil fuel use and become sustainable renewable energy producers”.