Minister marks biggest iwi home insulation partnership
Hon Hekia Parata
Acting Minister of Energy and Resources
26 August 2011
Minister marks the biggest iwi home insulation partnership to date
The Acting Minister of Energy and Resources, Hekia Parata, today acknowledged the significant investment the Tūwharetoa Settlement Trust has made in home insulation for its people.
The Trust has signed an agreement under the Government’s insulation programme, Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart, that will see it invest up to 67% of the cost to insulate each house.
2,600 homes of iwi members across the country will benefit making it the largest iwi home insulation partnership to date.
The Tūwharetoa project involves Government grants for each home with the Trust contributing the balance so that the insulation instalments are fully funded for their people. More than 300 homes have already had insulation installed under this agreement.
Ms Parata commended the Trust on its commitment to the health and wellbeing of its people when she spoke at Korohe Marae, near Turangi today.
She acknowledged the contribution of the Maori Party in the establishment of special projects, such as the Tūwharetoa project, under the umbrella of the Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart programme. She also acknowleged the Ruakawa Charitable Trust, who are the service providers.
“Warm houses lower the risk of people getting sick – and that is especially important for the young, the elderly and people with respiratory illnesses such as asthma.
“Asthma is the most common respiratory cause of hospitalisation for Māori, especially Māori children, whose asthma symptoms are more frequent and severe than their Pakeha counterparts.”
The Government is investing $347 million in Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart over four years to provide insulation and efficient heating for more than 188,500 homes. Over 100,000 homes have already been insulated nationwide.
Ms Parata said the Government’s funding commitment reflects the many benefits it delivers, including energy efficiency and health benefits.
“Anyone whose home was built before 2000 can get funding towards insulation under the programme.
“By partnering with other, non government organisations we make that funding go further. The whole community benefits from warmer and drier homes and I really hope other iwi will be inspired to take similar action to Tūwharetoa.
“Energy efficiency is a focus for our Government, along with renewables, the exploration of our natural resources and the pricing of carbon as we manage our environmental responsibilities and realise our economic opportunities,'' said Ms Parata.