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funding for clean heated, insulated homes welcome

April 13, 2006

Central govt funding boost for clean heated, insulated homes welcome recognition of good groundwork in Canterbury – ECan chairman

Sir Kerry Burke, chairman of Environment Canterbury, has welcomed today’s $500,000 funding boost from central government to retrofit 150 houses with insulation and clean heating in Christchurch.

“This is a welcome reward for the highly successful Clean Heat Project in Christchurch, which is an Environment Canterbury initiative, fully funded by ratepayers to help ease the burden of switching to less polluting home heating,” Sir Kerry said.

“The Clean Heat Project began three years ago. In that time, 5000 Christchurch home owners have had a full assessment made of their home heating needs and gone ahead with insulation and the switch to clean heat, benefiting from a full or partial Clean Heat subsidy and now the loan option.”

Around 12,000 of Christchurch’s 100,000 plus households had registered with the Clean Heat Project and taken at least the first step towards switching the way they heated their homes and stayed warm in winter.

Sir Kerry said the government’s new environmental standard for air quality to be achieved by 2013 had increased the impetus for changes to home heating in several urban areas around New Zealand.

“This funding is a good start to central government recognising and taking a share of the ownership of this issue and will help Environment Canterbury convert more homes to clean heat. It is good to see that the Ministry for the Environment recognises that the need to achieve the national air standard will have a much greater impact upon communities with more urban air pollution due to their geography and windless winter conditions. “

Environment Minister David Benson-Pope had earlier this year announced that 30 Timaru families would receive a free heat pump or wood pellet burner as part of the government’s Warm Homes Trial, run by the Ministry and Environment Canterbury with support from the Timaru District Council.

ENDS

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