Fossil fuels and heating homes


Sir, – Kevin McPartlan of the Irish Petroleum Industry Association laments the lack of grants for high-efficiency oil boilers (Letters, May 21st).

Contrary to his suggestion, this strategy is not based on technologies per se, but rather on the singular objective of weaning Ireland off fossil fuels through greater energy efficiency and increased use of renewable energy.

As we confront the climate crisis, Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland’s grant schemes properly reflect this policy.

Mr McPartlan criticises accepted best practice, embodied in our grant scheme, that one should first reduce heat loss in walls and roofs before installing a high-efficiency heating system. He dramatically overstates the costs to achieve the requisite performance in an average home. And fails to point to the generous grants available from SEAI towards such efficiency upgrades. SEAI is satisfied that almost a quarter of a million homes are heat-pump ready today and hundreds of thousands more require only modest upgrades which will pay for themselves very quickly. SEAI is offering real options for people to change their heating systems today so as not to be locked in to fossil-fuel systems for the next 15 years. A total of 400,000 homeowners have already benefitted from these Government-funded grants. What’s not to love about a more comfortable, cost-effective and truly environmentally friendly home? – Yours, etc,


Head of Communications,

Sustainable Energy

Authority of Ireland,

Finnabair Business Park,


Co Louth.