Upcoming Training Events – Funded training for SMEs | BioBase4SME

Details here of two upcoming training events for SMEs innovating in the bioeconomy – available from BioBase4SME.

  • The first, on 14th March 2018, in Brussels, is on Communicating Sustainability.
  • The second, the Innovation BioCamp 2018, takes place from 3rd June to Friday 8th June 2018, with the closing date for applications being Friday 13th April 2018.

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We are feeling re-energised and excited as CKEA becomes 3CEA

CKEA becomes 3CEA

With 15 years of energy agency experience and an expanded geographical setting we felt it was time for a new look and new name. Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency is to become 3CEA – Three Counties Energy Agency to reflect our ‘3 Counties’ footprint of Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford.

Paddy Phelan, manager since 2012, explains

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BEC 2016 – a summary

BEC 2016

BEC 2016: CKEA’s role and projects

Carlow County Council co-ordinated a large and diverse partnership, project managed by Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency. It included 7 sports clubs, 14 private companies (including 1 multinational), 4 local community groups, 1 school and 2 public buildings. The community facilities are mainly concentrated in the Carlow Kilkenny area while the private sector companies are also located in counties Cork, Kildare and Meath. All of the energy credits are going to the community groups and a number of other innovative finance models are being applied including EPRP funding streams.

Leetherm Project Management were the lead applicant in the next BEC 2016 project with CKEA as project co-ordinators, partnering with two private companies, Leetherm and Corca Communications. 12 transport companies entered into an ESCO (Energy Service Company) to reduce their fuel spend through driver training and the installation of a vehicle management system. The resultant energy credits will be donated to finance the community building upgrades. In addition to 55 North & East Housing Association homes in counties Meath and Louth, the community projects include O’Neill Centre Kilkenny, Macroom GAA, Macroom Senior Citizens, Mullinahone GAA, Cloneen Community Hall and Clonmel Golf Club, Carrick-on-Suir rugby club, Ballyhale and Graiguenamanagh national schools, community buildings in Kilkenny and Thomastown, six SOS Kilkenny buildings and Tiglin Challenge, Co Wicklow. The measures include insulation upgrades, lighting, window and door replacements, boiler and heating controls.

Galway County Council lead an application with CKEA providing project management. The projects are primarily located in Co Galway. They include two public sector buildings, seven community buildings, two sports & leisure facilities, four private sector businesses and eight private homeowners on the Aran Islands. One of the private sector projects is located in Tralee, Co Kerry and another in Knock, Co Mayo. Of the 20 partners, 15 are non-residential not-for-profit organisations and the private sector partners are donating the value of their energy credits to the community sector projects. The retrofit measures are primarily insulation, window and door replacements but also include lighting upgrades, boiler replacements, cooling upgrades, controls and one renewable measure. Galway Co Council are using an internal ESCO (Energy Service Company) to fund the two local authority projects which represent 17% of the overall project.

Sustainable Transport for Business

Are You Eligible for a Slice of the €450,000 Energy Saving Transport Fund?


The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) is Providing Funding for Driver Behaviour Training and Monitoring to help reduce our imports of oil in the road transport sector. The transport sector in particular relies almost entirely on imported oil. Options to reduce this dependency include reducing energy demand by being smarter about how we use transport and embracing new technologies in a drive to reduce fuel consumption across the sector.

While the technological advancements in truck technology is playing its part in delivering savings, sustainable savings can’t be achieved with a skilled Driver at the wheel. Professional Drivers are a key component to sustainable cost reduction in operational costs. The trained driver will not alone reduce fuel consumed per tonne/km but will also maximise a vehicles performance capabilities, while increasing the life of tyres, clutches, brake linings, suspension components and of course vehicle residual values.

The SEAI are aware that Driver behaviour training can bring about a significant reduction in HGV fuel consumption. To this end they have agreed to provide funding for Driver behaviour training in the road transport sector, through a model where the proceeds of fuel savings in the transport sector are delivered to support social housing and community group energy saving schemes.

A strategic alliance was brokered and coordinated by The Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency Ltd to form a sustainable delivery partnership between Corcra a telematics provider, Leetherm Project Management sustainable energy solutions provider for domestic and business energy retrofit, Gencat a specialist professional driver training company and Board Na Mona as the obligated party and the recipient of accumulated carbon credits to offset their CO2 target fines for 2020. The group were successful in receiving grant aid approval for the road transport sector using the social and community benefiting scheme. Over € 450,000 has been allocated in the first round of funding under this scheme and it allows for approximately 370 to 450 HGV’s participate and is available to all road transport operators regardless of fleet size, on a first come first served basis before 15th September 2016. GenCat_Transport_DriverRobert Steele is Corcra’s key account manager and he has been very active over the past three years working on accessing SEAI funding for the sector with The Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency following pilot installation in 2014 in South Kilkenny. Robert said that he has being working closely with Gencat Limited who deliver the ‘Creating a Professional Driver Culture Programme’. The training programme is key to successful and sustainable savings. Creating a Professional Driving Culture within a transport operation is crucial to reducing costs and attracting and retaining skilled professional Drivers. Professional Drivers want to work with firms who look after their interests. It’s a complex and demanding role that the trained Professional Driver just makes it look easy.

Both Corcra and Gencat have had considerable success with the combination of telematics and Driver training. Some fleets have seen their fuel consumption reduce considerably, but what is just as important as a reduction in fuel consumption they have seen the success of the team building that is generated from the programme and the emergence of a more professional attitude among Drivers becoming the norm.

To be eligible for funding of 25% of the cost of telematics equipment and Driver training, firms must be able to verify sustainable fuel saving of at least 5-10% over a five-year period up to the end of 2020. Fuel consumption is monitored by fitting the NIBC telematics system. Gencat will then complete an intensive twelve-week training programme which does not involve taking the driver or a vehicle off the road. A once off three-hour class room session is followed by weekly tutorials and behaviour feedback given directly to the Driver. After the initial 12 weeks Drivers and management get quarterly reports up to the end of 2020. The programme is designed to allow firms to continue to use the reporting system for the duration of the five-year event.

To find out more about how to participate in the SEAI fund contact Robert Steele on 0044 7939 920333 or Joe Doyle on 0877507579    

The World Sustainable Energy Days 2016 conference

Paddy Phelan, Manager, Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency is presenting at the World Sustainable Energy Days 2016 WSED_Logo_2016Event, in Wels, Austria. Paddy is presenting on the 26th of February at the 09.30 Workshop: How to dynamise energy performance contracting (EPC) markets? Paddy will be discussing the Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency and their experience from facilitating EPC markets.

– Energy Efficiency Services Conference (programme)
Energy efficiency services are key for the transition of the building sector. New financing approaches and operation models support not only sustainable buildings and technology innovation but also create jobs throughout Europe.



 As a project partner to the Austrian OÖ Energiesparverband, we would like to draw your attention to a very interesting set of events held in the context of the international conference World Sustainable Energy Days 2016, 24 – 26 February 2016 in Wels/Austria!
The 2016 edition of the World Sustainable Energy Days offers 6 conferences and 3 hands-on events covering technologies, policies and markets. The full conference programme is available www.wsed.at. In 2015, the event attracted more than 750 participants from 64 countries.

The events of the World Sustainable Energy Days 2016:
– European Nearly Zero Energy Buildings Conference (including Site Visits) (programme)
The European conference on high efficiency buildings supplied by renewable energy covers the latest trends in building technologies, policies and markets.
– Energy Efficiency Services Conference (programme)
Energy efficiency services are key for the transition of the building sector. New financing approaches and operation models support not only sustainable buildings and technology innovation but also create jobs throughout Europe.
– European Pellet Conference (programme)
The European Pellet Conference is the largest annual pellet event in the world.
– Young Researchers Conference: Energy Efficiency + Biomass (programme)
Dedicated to the next generation of professionals and experts, the conference track presents the work and achievements of young researchers in the field of energy efficiency and biomass.
– European Energy Efficiency Watch Conference (programme)
The Energy Efficiency Watch Conference presents a panorama of successful policies and programmes that support the realisation of energy efficiency potentials in the EU countries.
– Smart Facade Materials Conference (programme)
Results from innovative research in the field of smart facade materials.
– Technical Site Visits (further information)
Site Visits on Pellet & Wood Chips and to Nearly Zero Energy Buildings
– Poster Presentation (further information)
A display of successful projects in the fields of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources
– Tradeshow “Energiesparmesse”
With more than 100,000 visitors, one of Europe’s largest tradeshows for renewable energy and energy efficiency (further information)

The World Sustainable Energy Days conference is organised by the OÖ Energiesparverband, the energy agency of Upper Austria. Upper Austria is an ideal location for such a conference: by 2030, all electricity and space heating in the region will come from renewable energy sources. Already today, the region has a leading role in energy efficiency and renewable energy sources (36 % of the of the energy demand is covered by renewable energy). Also, thanks to consistent policies, there are already more than 1,000 buildings meeting passive building standard and several thousand “Nearly Zero Energy Buildings” in the region.

The conference office is at your disposal for any further questions (T: +43-732-7720-14386, office@esv.or.at).
Registration is still open. Sign up online and take part!

Streetlight EPC


What’s Renewable Energy?

renewable energiesWhat is Renewable Energy?

The benefits of such energy sources are obvious in terms of supply – but another important benefit is that renewable energies are much better for the environment than conventional fossil fuels such as oil, gas and coal. This is because burning fossil fuels adds greenhouse gases, which have been ‘locked up’ within the Earth, back into the atmosphere. This is a major cause of the phenomenon known as ‘Climate Change’.

Another benefit of using renewable energy is that while we import most of our fossil fuel, there are abundant sources of RE available locally.

Renewable energy sources are all around us and many are as old as civilization itself – yet we don’t always appreciate them or use them as much as we could. There are many different types of renewable energy, some you may have heard of – like solar power, others may be new to you – like biomass energy.

The Carlow Kilkenny Energy agency have information on the various renewable energy resources and technologies available to you by clicking on the Resources page.

Direct benefits for users of renewable energy

  • Almost every energy user has at least one source of renewable energy available to them, from the geothermal heat in back gardens to the solar energy falling on roofs.
  • Modern renewable energy systems can provide a high level of automation, reliability and responsiveness, operate with high energy conversion efficiency and produce very low or zero emissions.
  • Many companies are now offering a wide range of renewable energy services and equipment for domestic, commercial and industrial energy users.
  • Locally sourced renewable energies can provide clean, sustainable, and cost effective sources of heat, electricity, and transport fuel. Significant savings can be made by using renewable energy in terms of both energy costs and Carbon dioxide emissions reduction when compared to using fossil fuel.
  • Renewable energies can offer stable, predictable and long term energy prices.
  • For certain renewable energy developments, grant aid may be available to support projects.

Benefits to the economy and environment

There are many environmental benefits associated with using renewable energy:

  • The main environmental benefit of using renewable energy is the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. This will in turn reduce the fines resulting from not meeting our Kyoto and EU targets for greenhouse gas emissions reductions and renewable energy implementation.
  • Renewable energy technologies produce little or no pollution, whereas energy from fossil fuels is a primary source of air, water, and soil pollution. Pollutants, such as carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, and particulate matter all impact negatively on the local environment.
  • Using locally sourced renewable energies also reduces the harmful emissions and pollution risks associated with the transport of fossil fuels.
  • Using the renewable energy sources available locally reduces fossil fuel imports, thus improving the balance of payments for the exchequer and keeping money within the local economy.
  • Using renewable energy reduces exposure to fluctuations in fossil fuel price and security of supply, especially oil.
  • Renewable energy offers the opportunity to create new jobs in rural areas as well as providing alternative land uses for farmers.

Renewable Technologies

Renewable Energy Resources in Carlow and Kilkenny

There is a huge renewable energy resource waiting to be tapped into in Co. Carlow and Co. Kilkenny. Full exploitation of the Accessible renewable energy resources in the Counties would mean that we could meet 50% of our primary energy requirements from local renewable energy resources.

The development of renewable energy sources is a priority at local, regional, national and at a European level. It is an objective of the existing County Development Plans of both counties to encourage and facilitate the development of renewable energy developments where it is consistent with the proper planning and development of the area.

The Carlow Kilkenny Energy Agency carried out a survey in 2005 of the potential and practical availability of the renewable energy resources in Co. Carlow and Co. Kilkenny. All these resources have potential to be used to reduce our dependence on imported fossil fuels.

The Agency can offer support and advice to anyone wishing to utilise the renewable energy resources in the Counties whether using wood, solar or geothermal energy to heat homes and other premises, for the development of wind and biogas projects, or for the use of biofuels for transport.

The renewable energy resource reports can be accessed from our Resources page.