80% Increase in Retrofits across Waterford

80% Increase in Retrofits across Waterford

An 80% increase in numbers of properties across Waterford availing of energy upgrades is a sign of a retrofitting programme ramping up to meet need, according to Green Party Marc Ó Cathasaigh. According to figures released by the SEAI, the numbers of homes retrofitted in Waterford increased from 436 in 2021 to 785 last year, mirroring the national trend.

In Dep. Ó Cathasaigh’s view, it is a trend that’s set to continue:

‘The data in the SEAI’s report shows an increase in every quarter of last year, a signal that capacity in the retrofitting sector is expanding all the time. WWETB has pioneered specialist training courses aimed at retrofitting and construction professionals are seeing the advantages in upskilling and retraining.’

According to the Tramore TD, a retrofitted home comes with many advantages:

‘Behind these figures are 785 families and households now living in warmer, healthier homes, with improved air quality and lower running costs. That’s especially true in the case of the 4,438 low-income households across the country who had their retrofit fully funded under the likes of the Warmer Homes scheme, lifting families out of energy poverty. And there is also a climate dividend, with over 40kt CO2 emissions saved through these measures.’

But Dep. Ó Cathasaigh acknowledges there is some distance yet to travel: ‘While the numbers are improving with every quarter, demand is still well in excess of capacity. We’ve been slow to unlock the type of low-interest loans that will put deep retrofits within reach of middle-income earners, and this has yet to be remedied. The target set out in the Climate Action Plan is ambitious, to upgrade 50,000 homes to B2 or better by 2030, so it’s clear that there’ll be good jobs to be had in this sector for years to come