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As summer approaches and your garden springs back to life, it’s time to plant the seeds of a renewable energy system for your home.

Posted on: April 3rd, 2007

With government grants of up to £15,000, the installation of such renewable energy systems as solar panels, wood fuelled boilers or ground source heat pumps, can blossom into reality.

Jennifer Gibb, Energy Division, Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment said: “Reconnect, the DETI renewable energy grant initiative, has already offered over £4.5million of financial assistance to over 1700 private homeowners here, seeking to install domestic renewable energy systems.

“The application and installation process is easier than most people think. For instance, it only takes one day to have a solar panel installed and around two days for a wood-fuelled boiler. As Easter comes around and our minds turn to sprucing up our homes and gardens for the summer, why not consider a renewable energy system as part of those make-over plans?”

Dr Andy McCrea, Director, Action Renewables, the organisation which delivers Reconnect, encourages everyone to investigate the installation of a renewable energy system this Easter.

He said: “Reconnect makes renewable energy a cheaper, easier and more practical option for people to heat and power their homes.

“The most popular technology to date through Reconnect has been the wood-fuelled boiler. Wood not only provides another fuel option to coal, oil and gas but can provide significant fuel cost savings as well as reduced carbon dioxide emissions.

“In Northern Ireland, contrary to popular belief, there is a very useful supply of solar energy – particularly as we enter the spring and summertime. Solar hot water panels should be considered as an option. From the ground they resemble a skylight window and can provide around 40% of an average family’s annual hot water requirements. Similarly, solar photovoltaic (PV) panels, which are also normally roof-mounted, can provide around a quarter of an average home’s annual electricity demand.

“Reconnect with renewable energy this Easter. It is an ideal way to help you save money, whilst improve the environment.”

To find out more about renewable energy systems call the helpline

0800 023 4077 or email reconnect@detini.gov.uk. Alternatively text ENERGY to 60900. Further information is also available on: www.reconnect.org.uk