Sustainable Energy Communities (SEC)

Kilkenny Community Energy

Sustainable Energy Communities – County Kilkenny is gaining momentum with 10 community groups signed up to the Sustainable Energy Community Network. These include:

  • Thomastown
  • The Barrow Development Group (Graiguenamagh)
  • 2 groups in Mooncoin
  • Callan
  • Windgap
  • Gairdin an Ghorta (Newmarket)
  • The Good Shepard
  • Freshford

There are over 300 SECN members in Ireland at the moment, each community at varying stages of the journey to becoming more sustainable and taking control of their energy use. The main benefit of being a member is the sharing of knowledge with others groups. Following on from being a SECN member, is joining up to a Partnership agreement with SEAI and develop an Energy Master Plan for each community. Over 80 communities across Ireland have progressed onto the Partnership with Thomastown being one of these.

Kilkenny Energy Town

The Kilkenny Energy Town project is funded through Kilkenny Leader Partnership. The aim of the project is to find a Kilkenny Energy Town Campion. There is prize is €100,000 and it goes to the town with a strong energy project concept, strong team, high impact project and capacity to deliver project with 2020 timeline. Events were held across the county in March 2019 to promote the competition at locations in in Graiguenamagh, Callan, Castlecomer and Mooncoin.

All events were well attended and there was a lot of interest in participating in the project. 3CEA have engaged with interested towns and are currently in the process of doing business pans and completing applications with each of the town community groups as part of the application process. There is a great range of projects and great community involvement.

The closing date for application is Friday 12th July 2019. After this, the applications will be reviewed by an independent panel of judges and the award will be made to the winning town.  See more here http://3cea.ie/kilkenny-energy-town/

The vision for County Kilkenny is to establish a group of communities within the county that can all work together and learn for the experience of others. For example, Callan, has vast experience in the development of renewable projects and can assist others in the knowledge they have gained from the success and failure of projects.

Other communities are well organised and good structures are being put in place for communities to really put themselves in a position to link in and benefit from the long awaited Support Scheme for Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS), see here for eligibility and further info.

Most community groups are voluntary and need support from independent energy agencies like 3CEA who have the technical knowledge and experience in working with bringing community groups. 3CEA is providing a core role if the development to this sustainable energy community network across county Kilkenny.

Interested in joining? Contact Jane Wickham on jwickham(at)3cea.ie

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