03/09/2007

Minister Launches NI Renewable Energy Campaign

Energy Minister Nigel Dodds has launched a new advertising campaign to highlight the availability of renewable energy grants to homeowners across Northern Ireland.

The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment’s (DETI) advertising campaign, offers private homeowners Reconnect grants of up to 50% for the installation of renewable energy systems, allowing them to ‘Go Green at Home For Less’.

The television campaign is set to start on 3 September 2007.

Mr Dodds said: “Northern Ireland currently generates around 95% of its electricity through the burning of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil and gas. Government, through the offer of up to 50% Reconnect grant assistance, is committed to increasing the use of renewable energy. The grants aim to help up to 4000 households across Northern Ireland install a renewable technology by 2008. To date DETI has paid out more than £2.5million, allowing over 1000 people from across the country, to go renewable.”

The TV campaign, supported by cinema, outdoor, online and press advertising, has been created using fuzzy felt imagery.

In the advertisement, a little girl explains why we need to consider renewable energy now, what could happen if we ignore energy conservation and disregard the threat to the environment from fossil fuels.

The Minister continued: “Renewable energy may be a relatively new technology; however with the help of Reconnect grants and the Reconnect experts, the process is quite straightforward. The launch of the new campaign marks an important milestone in the promotion of renewable energy. It gives fresh impetus to this very important green initiative and I hope it will generate an increased interest to become less reliant on imported fuels and reduce harmful emissions now and in the years ahead.”

Reconnect, is one part of the government’s £59.2million Environment and Renewable Energy Fund (EREF).

The aim of EREF is to enhance and accelerate renewable energy development and deployment in Northern Ireland.

(SB/SP)

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