For Written Answer on : 31/01/2023
Question Number(s): 775 Question Reference(s): 4502/23
Department: Agriculture, Food and the Marine
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Minister for Agriculture; Food and the Marine further to Parliamentary Question No. 662 of 24 January 2023, the exact number of solar PV system installations in receipt of a TAMS grant which have, to date, been inspected by staff from his Department to ensure that the work carried out has met the minimum requirements of his Department’s specifications; the number of such Departmental staff who are qualified to ensure that the facilities are installed correctly and safely and that they are fit for purpose for use by the applicant; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
To date 198 Solar PV system installations have been inspected for quality control by this Department. In total 47 solar panels have been inspected, 44 in Pigs and Poultry Investment Scheme and 3 in the Young Farmer’s Capital Investment Scheme. 151 Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Panels have been inspected, 132 in the Animal Welfare and Nutrients Safety Scheme, 48 in the Pigs and Poultry Investment Scheme and 15 in the Young Farmer’s Capital Investment Scheme
DAFM technical staff have received in house training delivered by our structures & engineering section on how to correctly check the required documentation provided by the registered qualified installers and to verify that this documentation is correct and matching to what has been delivered on farms, thus ensuring that the facilities delivered are correctly installed and fit for purpose. In excess of 100 staff have received training on inspecting these investment.
Additionally, on-farm experience garnered from inspecting these investments over that last numbers of years has also been invaluable as these investments increase in popularity to contribute substantially in meeting our climate change targets.
These solar investments have been available since the start of TAMS II in the Pig Poultry Investment Scheme. DAFM technical staff are not advisors on, or installers of, this type of equipment.