Financial help for households that heat their homes with wood and wood pellets is set to be available on request from the end of December, with €230million of public funds available in total.
The website for applications is set to open on December 22. It is not yet online.
Public Accounts Minister Gabriel Attal, who is managing the funds, told BFMTV Politique today (November 27): “We are going to open this aid from December 22.
“People in France who heat with wood can log on to the site chequeenergie.gouv.fr and enter their information to check that they are within the eligible revenue band and that they do indeed use wood for heating.”
Up to €200 will be available, depending on household income.
Mr Attal said: “People in France who earn up to €2,260 for a single person or up to €4,750 for a couple with two children, will receive between €50 to €200.”
The funding aid was introduced after parliament adopted the bill with 218 votes in favour and just one against.
Shortages and scams
It comes after the price of firewood and wood pellets has soared in France in recent months, with stock “under tension”. This has been explained by more households entering the market, people starting to prepare for winter earlier than usual, and a shortage of stocks.
In September, the French heating federation, la Fédération Française des Combustibles, Carburants & Chauffage (FFCCC), said: "Subsidised installations of stoves and boilers are growing faster than the national capacity to produce the necessary fuels.”
It warned that “the lack of supply could be as much as 5-15% depending on the weather”.
The shortage has also sparked more scams. Online ‘too good to be true’ offers offered apparently low-cost heating wood and wood pellets, with cheap and fast delivery. But instead, customers did not receive their wood, and in some cases had hundreds or thousands of euros stolen from their accounts.
Scam websites included:
Users should not visit or purchase from these websites, and stay alert to websites that appear to offer ‘too-good-to-be-true’ offers.