12 November 2023
By Tom Collins
This weekend’s Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Athlone heard calls for a reform of the government’s retrofitting scheme as a means of improving Cork City’s woeful domestic energy ratings.
Sinn Féin local area representative for Ballincollig and candidate in Cork City South West, Joe Lynch, highlighted how Cork City has the lowest proportion of A rated dwellings and the highest number of G rated dwellings when compared with other cities across the State.
Addressing the climate action session of the Ard Fheis, Joe Lynch said:
“Sinn Féin have been to the fore in calling for major reform of the government’s approach to retrofitting because the current plan is not working. We need to see a major overhaul if we have are to have any hope of meeting the 2030 target of having 500,000 homes reach a B2 energy rating or higher.
“Cork City has the lowest proportion of A rated homes and the highest number of G rated homes when compared with other cities across the State. We also have the oldest housing stock in the country, meaning retrofitting homes across Cork City is more complex and costly.
“Despite this, and despite the fact that nearly one in three people are living in energy poverty, the government’s current retrofitting plan prioritises those with the greatest means over those in the greatest need.
“Sinn Féin has presented a real alternative in our policy document ‘A Fairer Retrofit Plan’, where we commit to significantly increasing the retrofitting budget, targeting the funding at the poorest, coldest and most carbon intensive homes. We would also increase the budget for local authority retrofits.
“In government, Sinn Féin will deliver a fair and realistic retrofitting scheme, making a real difference to the lives of ordinary workers and families in Cork; cutting energy bills and reducing carbon emissions.”