Have your say on Community Energy - Submit to the Microgeneration Consultation using our handy guide
Posted by Kate Ruddock on February 04, 2021 at 05:05 PM
We’ve reached a critical juncture in our campaign for renewable, community owned energy. In a matter of months we could finally have a support scheme for small renewable energy microgenerators. But this scheme could end up being very good - or pretty bad. The difference hangs in our collective hands!
We've been campaigning for this type of scheme for years. And now - finally - the Government has agreed that it’s needed!
Sadly however, the finer details of the scheme that’s being proposed at the moment are not good. The scheme has all sorts of restrictions, meaning that it’s unlikely to be suitable for farmers, schools, or communities across Ireland who could really benefit from renewable energy. It is being set up to target those living in private homes. Which is far from good enough. But hope is not lost - we can still change this scheme to make it fairer and more accessible to all. Because right now, the Government is seeking the public's views on the scheme proposal. If lots of us ask for changes, we could make the scheme a lot better.
So will you submit your views? Depending on how much time you have, we’ve got two action options for you to choose from. Got two minutes? Then take our quick e-action to make a submission on the microgeneration scheme - using our prepared responses.
Got 10 or 15 minutes? Make your own personalised submission, using this google doc as a guide. You can choose to answer some or all of the 14 questions - using our sample answers that you can edit as you like.
Thanks to fantastic work by our supporters, friends and allies, we’ve made huge strides in the struggle for community energy and energy democracy in Ireland. We’ve worked with, and alongside, people, schools and communities who are trying to take part in, and even lead, Ireland’s clean energy transition. We started our Run on Sun campaign in 2017, some of you joined us at Electric Picnic to collect signatures for a petition to support solar power. Countless e-actions, photo stunts, policy meetings and visits to the Dail later, we’ve finally persuaded the Government to accept that a support scheme for small microgenerators is needed. We’ve won the argument, we just need to fight for a fair deal now. If we flood the Government with consultation responses they’ll feel huge pressure to make the scheme better. But we don’t have long to act, the consultation closes on 18th February.
So will you act now to ask for a fair deal for renewable energy microgenerators?
Our renewable energy campaigning at Friends of the Earth has always been about community. This scheme is fine for homeowners, and will encourage people who already live in very energy efficient homes to install solar panels. But it forgets about community. We’ve got to change that. We’ve got to make it work for ordinary people who get together in their communities to generate energy. And for farmers and schools who need a fair price for the excess energy they generate - earning them some much needed funds. So let’s make sure we get the scheme that communities deserve - and make sure it doesn’t fall at the last hurdle. We hope you'll take action as we make this final push.