State will have to offer cheap finance, not handouts, for people retrofitting their homes

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Fianna Fáil’s spokesperson on Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Timmy Dooley has said that the State is going to have to intervene and offer financial packages to encourage people to retrofit their homes, as part of the Government’s Climate Action Plan.

He said he was not talking about a hand-out, that the Government could offer cheap finance to help people make their homes more environmentally efficient.

Mr Dooley told RTE radio’s Morning Ireland that there needs to be a significant investment and that the “bulk of the work” will have to be done by citizens who should be supported.

Appropriate measures will have to be taken to protect people vulnerable to fuel poverty, he added.

He urged the Government not to introduce any measures until a plan is in place to assist people. This could be done under the social welfare code.

Plans that have to be introduced over the next 10 years should be implemented gradually and allow people time to retrofit their homes.

“It’s about certainty and knowing where they will be in five years or 10 years time.”

Mr Dooley was critical of the Government’s Climate Action Plan launched on Monday, which he described as containing “a lot of hope and aspiration, but not enough detail.”

The bulk of the work will have to be done by citizens who will be “saddled with debt” he warned.

“People will be up to their eyeballs in debt. The State is going to have to intervene with financial packages, not a hand-out, but through cheap finance.”

Mr Dooley said there needs to be a dramatic increase in funding for public transport rather than on roads.

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