Heating oil trade association responds to first draft of Ireland’s National Energy & Climate Plan

Ireland's National Energy & Climate Plan

Responding to the first draft of Ireland’s National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP). the trade association for the oil and fuel sector in Ireland and the UK, The Federation of Petroleum Suppliers (FPS) has written to the Irish Minister for Communications, Climate Action & the Environment, Richard Bruton.

The FPS has requested a meeting to discuss how the association can work with the Government to help find ways to reduce Ireland’s carbon footprint.

The FPS and its members feel strongly that oil and – more long-term – a liquid efuel and/or bio fuel, can be part of the phased solution and the association has been working closely with the European Confederation of Fuel Distributors (ECFD), boiler manufacturers and other trade associations to promote a liquid bio fuel.

FPS Ireland Representative Nick Hayes commented on the move: “Our members play an important role in the Irish economy in supplying not only heating oil for homes and businesses but also fuel for agriculture, construction, road transport, marine fuels and importantly fuel for back-up generators for hospitals, schools, care homes and data centres. Several demonstration projects with heating systems running on partly renewable liquid fuels are already in place across Europe, achieving substantial levels of emissions reduction, so it is disappointing that this potential is not mentioned in the Minister’s recent statement. The Minister says that at least 170,000 homes will be supported to switch out oil-fired boilers to heat pumps and solar panels. I would appreciate understanding the rationale for this figure and the technology assigned for the switch out. There is a danger in making early technology decisions and also in only concentrating on a small section of oil-fired homes when industry innovation can help all oil-fired homes.”

The FPS believes the Government should look at a tiered approach to achieving the 2050 carbon reduction target, setting a pathway of home heating carbon emission reductions. That way industry can adapt all aspects of technological innovation thereby providing the means for consumers to make cost competitive choices in meeting those targets. A change to the standard specifications of the fuel would also give industry time to implement innovative solutions.