The long wait is over and we now know the bones of the Irish RHI.
This information has just become available as we go to press so all we can give this issue is a brief summary.
Much detail is missing and as we know the devil is in the detail.
The scheme would appear to be based on individual installations with no limit to number or size of boilers.
The first 300 MWh/year will be paid at 5.66 c/KWh. Payment €16,980.
Someone spending €17,000 on oil could change to biomass spend €12,750 on fuel and receive €16,980 RHI payment.
The next 700 MWh/year will be paid at 3.02 c/kwh. Payment €21,114.00.
What does this mean?
A 100 tonne / week mushroom farm heating only, a 70 tonne farm heating and steaming or a 2-3 house chicken farm spending €50,000 on fossil fuel could change to biomass spend €37,500 on fuel and receive €38,094 subsidy.
The next 9,000 KWh/year will be paid at 0.50 c/kwh. This level of payment in practice limits the scheme to the small to medium level energy user.
The subsidy will be paid for 15 years with some get out clauses.
Installations installed since 2014 may be considered for inclusion.
There is a hint that conversions of boilers from fossil fuel to biomass may be allowed.
There is no indication of the standard of boiler or fuel so we could end up like Northern Ireland, using fuel that wrecks equipment and pollutes the atmosphere.
Is it a case of the cure being worse than the disease..?