Irish households are set to receive a €200 credit on their electricity bills within days.
The energy rebate is issued by the government in recognition of the pressures placed on households due to the rising cost of living.
The €176.22 credit (excl. VAT) will appear on bills in April, meaning people will start seeing the discount on their bills from next week.
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This will continue to be issued over the next month or so, depending on the billing cycle of the household and the electricity supplier.
Households do not need to apply for it or contact their electricity supplier, the credit will apply automatically.
Some 2.25 million household electricity accounts are eligible for the program and anyone with a household electricity account can get paid, including pay-per-view customers.
For tenants paying their landlord for electricity, the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) provides guidance to landlords and tenants to ensure credit is passed on to tenants.
For customers using prepaid meters in case of difficulty, the electricity credit of €200 will be applied during three separate recharges or sales.
These meters have a credit limit of €300, and government credit could put the meter over that limit.
As a solution, the credit will be broken down into three smaller credits of €90, €90 and €20, which can be redeemed within days – by the customer making a €10 payment on their electricity bill.
Customers will be advised to pay only €10 each time to receive their credit note, and to allow a day between each payment.
Announcing further details of the scheme earlier this month, Environment Minister Eamon Ryan said: “The government is fully aware of recent increases in the cost of living and the impact of rising inflation throughout the economy.
“Rising energy costs have played an important role in this, due to rising energy costs internationally and, more recently, due to the crisis in Ukraine.
“As part of the government’s package of measures to combat the rising cost of living, we have recently increased the electricity credit for all households to a value of €200. This will be put in place soon.
“Furthermore, my officials and I will continue our efforts to ensure that we, and the relevant agencies under my responsibility, explore all avenues to identify and assist those most in need.”
Minister Ryan added: “Internationally, natural gas prices have been on an upward trend since the second half of 2020. This has directly impacted retail electricity prices as the wholesale price electricity is strongly correlated to the price of gas.
“In the long term, the way to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels is to expand our own local supply of renewable energy and invest in the energy efficiency of our homes.
“We are striving to have up to 80% of our electricity from renewables by 2030 and we now have supports for homeowners, farms and small businesses to generate their own electricity and sell any excess This, in addition to an immediate short circuit – long-term measures, this is what we need to do – to protect Irish households from high energy costs over the next few years.
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