Focus on the Land
Gisborne NZ’s top insulator
Saturday, October 06, 2012
THIS region has the largest uptake of home insulation in the whole country with one in four homes now buffered against the cold.
Minister of Housing Phil Heatley flew into town yesterday to recognise Gisborne as a leader in the home insulation field and paid a visit to Patutahi resident David Hawea, who has been a big promoter of the scheme.
The MP’s visit was two-fold and in the afternoon he spoke with seven iwi leaders about oil and gas exploration under his Energy and Resources portfolio.
“They are significant landholders and so the opportunity for them is quite big.”
Mr Heatley congratulated Tairawhiti’s homeowners, charitable trusts and insulation installers on achieving the greatest regional uptake of the Government’s Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart insulation programme.
Almost 4000 homes — 25 percent — were now warmer, drier and healthier.
“This is a great achievement, especially in an area with traditionally high health and welfare needs.”
Mr Hawea’s home was insulated by Smart Energy Solutions, which have the contract for the south side of the river in Tairawhiti.
He was credited for being “hugely” instrumental for getting his friends and whanau to sign up and get their homes insulated.
Of the almost 4000 insulated homes in Tairawhiti, 73 percent were low-income and 20 percent were rental accommodation.
Hawke’s Bay has the country’s second highest uptake with 18 percent of homes insulated.
The large participation rate in Tairawhiti is largely credited to the multi-million dollar support from the Eastland Community Trust (ECT) for its Warm-up Eastland insulation project.
Since 2009, ECT has committed $4.5 million and attracted additional Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) funding of $7.6m.
This has meant insulation costs are largely covered and some households with Community Service Cards are able to participate for free.
General manager Leighton Evans said ECT was proud to be associated with the scheme and the trust was very happy with the way things were going.
EECA’s Robert Linterman has described ECT as a national leader in its backing of the project, which has brought health and economic benefits of $60 million to the district.
Minister Heatley indicated the Government would continue funding the scheme for another 12 months, by which time he said every single state house in New Zealand — all 70,000 of them — would be insulated.
“The Government’s investment in the insulation programme is paying off for everyone by lowering health costs, cutting down on days off work and school due to illness, increasing productivity and generally improving people’s well-being.”
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