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Launch of Schools Energy Retrofit Pathfinder Programme for 2022

School classroom

Date: 02 Jan 2022

The Minister for Education, Norma Foley, and the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications Eamon Ryan have launched a €28 million Schools Energy Retrofit Pathfinder programme that will illustrate the approach to deep retrofit in the schools’ sector, testing energy efficiency solutions and renewable heat technology. 

The €28 million budget is jointly funded by the Department of Education and Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications. Simultaneously, it is administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) and the Planning and Building Unit in the Department of Education with support from Limerick Clare Education and Training Board. 

The pathfinder programme has retrofitted 41 schools to date with work on an additional 9 schools added in 2021 underway. 2022 will see six additional schools from Clare, Cork, Dublin and Laois. These will undergo deep retrofit to a Building Energy Rating (BER) of B with renewable heating systems. Each school undergoes a comprehensive assessment to ensure that the measures are suitable for that school and will deliver value to both the school and learnings for the national retrofit programme. 

This programme continues to aid the department to determine and test solutions for more decarbonised energy efficiency solutions in Irish schools and to support the delivery of the Climate Action Plan. 

Design teams are being appointed to each school, with deep energy efficiency works to commence from summer 2022. The upgrades target a Building Energy Rating of B, 50% energy efficiency improvement and 51% emissions reduction. The work typically involves upgrades to the building fabric including wall and roof insulation, doors and windows, air tightness improvements, LED lighting and heating upgrades as well as renewable technologies. 

Find out more about the programme HERE