Register Now for an Information Session on Energy Grants and Supports

Join us online on the 21st September from 1-2pm as we discuss funding opportunities for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. What makes a good grant application? Who is eligible for funding? What measures are supported? Our highly experienced senior energy expert Alex will provide helpful tips and what you need to do to be successful. She will be covering everything from preparing for your application to best practice advice!

Businesses, SMEs, Farmers, Tidy Towns Groups, Co-operatives, Community Groups, Schools, Sports Clubs, Public Sector, Housing Associations and other groups are urged to attend the free information webinar as it is expected that the SEAI grant scheme will receive a high level of interest.

Grants are available through SEAI, who provide up to 50% funding for community projects, not for profits, charities, housing associations. And up to 30% funding for businesses, public sector, SMEs, industrial & commercial sector.

Ask the Expert

3cea’s Energy Engineer & Expert Alex Hamilton will provide helpful tips on how to access the funding for your energy project and what you need to do to be successful. Alex will take you through the grant application process in detail, the criteria and timelines and how to maximise the return on your investment.

What’s involved?

This one-hour Zoom session will run on the 21st of September from 1pm-2pm and is open to everyone with an interest in sustainability and community energy but will be of particular relevance to organisations and community groups looking to progress their identified energy projects.

The SEAI’s Better Energy Communities programme will be soon open for grant applications and we are urging applicants to get in touch with us now for the upcoming funding call. In the south east region the SEAI grant application is administered by the 3 Counties Energy Agency www.3cea.ie.

This event is the first step for interested organisations and businesses to understand what it takes to apply for energy grant funding for your project and what supports are available to achieve such a project. This session will offer a chance for all attendee’s to

• Understand the SEAI Grant process and what’s involved

• Ask the expert to gather feedback

• Meet the 3cea team project managing your energy project

How to register?

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

This event is the first step for interested organisations and businesses to understand what it takes to apply for energy grant funding for your project and what supports are available to achieve such a project.

What is SEAI’s Better Energy Communities Grant?

Better Energy Communities (BEC) is a national retrofit initiative managed by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). BEC offers a win-win grant aid solution for businesses, SMEs, parish halls, GAA clubs, hotels, farmers, charitable organisations, community groups, Tidy Towns Groups, public authorities, individuals and sports clubs to both lower their energy bills while reducing energy usage.

The SEAI’s Better Energy Communities programme will be soon open for grant applications and we are accepting applicants for the upcoming funding call. In the south east region the SEAI grant application process is administered by the 3 Counties Energy Agency www.3cea.ie.

How 3cea can help?

• 3cea team are well experience in writing successful grant applications that have tight deadlines and require a high level of technical information and paperwork.

• Our team of energy experts will help you manage the complex parts of the grant application and will be here to take your through the process from start to finish.

• Our mission is to act on your behalf to provide you with the resource, expertise and knowledge to help move your energy efficiency projects forward in the south east region.

• Our aim is to make energy efficiency improvements as simple as possible, to help you save money on energy bills and reduce carbon emissions. The quickest and most simplest way of reducing harmful emissions is investing in energy efficiency.

• Over the past 8 years, we’ve been successful in securing energy grant funding across all sectors. We have assisted in the delivery of cumulative energy savings of more than €19.6 million through the Communities Energy Grant (BEC) initiative.

For any further information contact Mari or Patrick at events@3cea.ie or 056 779 0856.

Get in contact with our team on https://3cea.ie/bec-contact/ or email us at bec@3cea.ie indicating your interest and we will be in touch.

The Greener HGV Programme saves up to €17,000 in five years

3 Counties Energy Agency has partnered with Corcra Ltd to launch The Greener HGV Programme. Having secured €1.4M funding under the Governments Climate Action Fund, The Greener HGV Programme will see 1,000 fleet vehicles across Ireland fitted with innovative technology which will enable drivers to reduce carbon emissions and save fleet companies approximately 10 per cent of their annual fuel costs. The Climate Action Fund is a Project Ireland 2040 investment fund.

3cea’s pilot project indicated a potential saving of €17,000 per vehicle over five years based on an investment of €2,800* per vehicle. A previous trial resulted in savings of 1,766.79 tonnes of CO2, like removing 866 cars from our roads for one year. The participating fleet companies saw an increase in fuel efficiency arising from the reduction in over-revving, harsh braking, and engine idling time by the drivers, leading to a significant reduction in energy consumption.

The Greener HGV Programme will run for two years. 3cea is coordinating the subsidy grant available for Irish fleet companies to install the innovative technology and providing driver efficiency training. Data collected from the newly installed tech coupled with the development of a conscious driving culture of HGVs will result in a reduction of the business’s carbon footprint and fuel costs. Irish fleet companies can apply to this program via www.greenerhgv.ie to avail of a 30 per cent technology software and hardware grant.

We would like to thank the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications for the Project Ireland 2040 funding and making it possible.

Paddy Phelan, CEO of 3cea explains,

“Under ‘The Greener HGV Programme’ the transport sector will reduce fuel consumption and emissions from vehicles by driving smarter and by embracing new technologies. The results from our initial test cases show that the benefits and cost savings are clear. Over two years with our partners Corcra, telematic equipment will be installed in over 1,000 HGV vehicles. With technology, and training to improve driver efficiency, the scheme is expected to deliver a significant reduction in CO2 and an average of 10 per cent fuel saving for participating fleet companies.”

Smart telematics including tracking, fuel, remote tachograph downloads and compliance software, live footage cameras and driver awareness panels are all part of the technology that will be used to deliver these sustainable measures. 3cea has partnered with Corcra, a leading Irish fleet communications company for The Greener HGV Programme.

Robert Steele, Ireland & UK Sales Manager from Corcra explains, 

“We use the hardware to gather real-time data which allows us to record baseline driver and vehicle information. After approximately six weeks, the data is analysed and we arrange the professional driver training and activate the in-cab Driver Awareness Panel, which is a driver aid. The new technology with gained knowledge from the driver training helps drivers to achieve more efficient driving and long-term sustainable energy practices.

Techniques that reduce engine revolutions can have a major impact on the vehicles’ fuel consumption and therefore its CO2 emissions. The project received final approvals in April and to date, we have fitted and commenced baseline data gathering on around 100 HGV’s. We expect to see increases in miles per gallon and reduction in fuel costs following the professional driver training that we offer.” 

A case study carried out by Corcra using similar conditions to the Greener HGV Project between January 2017 and September 2020 revealed the following results.2

  • MPG (Miles per Gallon) – Improved from 7.75MPG to 8.95MPG
  • A 15.4% increase in performance/ MPG
  • Saving of 658,365 litres of road diesel across 60 vehicles.
  • Emissions saving of 1,766.79 Tonnes of CO2. The equivalent of removing 866 cars from our roads for a year.3

“Every fleet vehicle in the country will benefit from this cost and emissions saving exercise. We have funding for 1,000 vehicles and have already fitted 100 HGVs with telematic equipment. Any fleet company that is interested in saving fuel and reducing their CO2 emissions needs to act now as we anticipate this scheme will be extremely popular.” Concluded Paddy Phelan of 3cea.

 

The Greener HGV Programme is funded by Project Ireland 2040, the government’s long-term overarching strategy to make Ireland a better country for all of its people. See: https://www.gov.ie/en/campaigns/09022006-project-ireland-2040/ for more.

Check out our case studies here and find out how we aim to make the transport sector more sustainable.


Some terms apply, see below for more.


How does it work? Click here to download the greener HGV programme booklet

Communities putting shoulder to wheel with renewable energy projects

More communities than ever before are coming together to develop renewable energy projects in their own localities, according to a Kilkenny-based energy engineer.

Gráinne Kennedy of independent energy agency 3cea (3 Counties Energy Agency) said that, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the organisation has experienced one of its busiest years on record in terms of the growing number of community groups that they are working with to reduce their energy costs and cut down on harmful carbon emissions:

“What we have particularly noticed in recent years is a dramatic increase in community groups and organisations who are actively seeking information on how to undertake energy efficiency retrofits – be they community centres, sports clubs, parish committees, childcare centres, community health organisations such as organisations that provide accommodation and supports to the elderly, national schools …. the list is growing by the week.

“It’s a win-win situation for these groups and organisations. Through the SEAI Sustainable Energy Community programme that 3cea delivers, they’re supported with capital funding, partnerships and technical support on energy saving projects. And now with the introduction of the government’s Renewable Energy Support Scheme, communities can set up their own solar farm or wind farm and sell that power to the national grid. Given that so many communities are taking an interest in their carbon footprint, the demand for information about community renewable energy projects has never been greater.”

To meet this demand, 3cea with the support of Kilkenny LEADER Partnership has organised a two-part online webinar aimed specifically at community groups in Kilkenny who are interested in developing a renewable energy project. The event takes place at 9.30am and 10.45am on Tuesday, 22nd June through Zoom and community groups and representatives can register for this FREE online webinar at http://bit.ly/KilkennyGridStudy.

The first session, hosted by Rory Mullan of electrical engineering consultancy Mullan Grid Consulting, will discuss the findings of a recent grid study carried out in the Kilkenny area. All energy produced by a renewable energy project must be transported via the grid to homes and businesses across the country. For a community renewable energy project to be feasible there must be capacity available in the grid to take the energy produced. This session will help attendees to identify if there is an opportunity to connect to the grid in their area. They can also see where the ideal location for a renewable energy project would be.

Part two of the webinar will be presented by Tom Bruton, of BioXl, an energy consultancy with expertise in renewable energy. It will look at the key steps and considerations a community must take in the development of a renewable energy project, such as securing land rights, constraint mapping, planning assessments and submission, grid application submission, payment milestones, qualifying and tendering for auction, preparing legal structures and community investment proposals.

* For any queries on this event, please contact Mari or Patrick on events@3cea.ie

For more information on 3cea’s range of community programmes, visit our Community page here.

Climate Action in the South East

Carlow, Kilkenny, Wexford and Waterford Communities Pioneer Climate Action in the South East

3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) welcomes Government’s announcement on Tuesday, 23rd March to approve a revised Climate Action Bill which includes specific targets on reducing carbon emissions over the next 30 years. The Climate Action Bill commits to a carbon neutral status for Ireland by end 2050 and halving the amount of greenhouse gas emissions within the next 10 years.

3cea sees the announcement as an opportunity to build on progress it has made in the region since it was established in 2002. The one-stop-shop is committed to driving social and behavioural change in the South East towards a low carbon economy. The non-profit agency drives sustainable energy projects offering commercial and business grants and supports, the Greener HGV Programme, National Home Retrofit Scheme, community and public sector projects working across homes, commercial properties, community, transport and agriculture and advice in counties Carlow, Kilkenny, Wexford and Waterford.

Paddy Phelan, CEO of 3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) says it is the responsibility of each individual, business owner and community to come together to achieve Government’s ambitious targets and 3cea will be there to help. He explains,

“Whilst the Carlow, Kilkenny, Wexford and Waterford local authorities will be closely examining its strategic plan to facilitate and steer climate action in the area, everyone in the county has a role to play in achieving the ambition of the new Bill. In the south east region, we are in excellent position to develop an all-inclusive decarbonising plan in line with the requirements set out in the Climate Action Bill. There are some outstanding examples within local communities and industry, for example the Danone Plant locally has achieved zero carbon emission in its manufacturing. Likewise the local community groups taking energy action illustrate how each home, local business and individual can help contribute towards a carbon neutral Ireland. Small changes in our individual behaviour can change our carbon footprint and it all adds up.”

Read more

ISO 50001

ISO 50001 Certification for Wexford County Council

Supported by 3 Counties Energy Agency, Wexford County Council has achieved the globally recognised international energy management standard, ISO 50001, becoming more advanced in optimising their energy efficiency.

The ISO 50001 standard was developed to support public and private sector organisations committed to efficient energy management providing the most robust framework for achieving cost and carbon emission reductions. It demonstrates that Wexford is taking a systematic and logical approach in its responsibility to continually improvement energy management as part of Climate Action goals and commitments.

Commenting on the council’s energy management and ISO50001 certification,Councillor Ger Carthy, Cathaoirleach, Wexford County Council said ‘We are very proud to achieve this standard. In achieving this international accreditation energy performance improvement is on the top of the agenda for the organisation and I commend all involved for the great work done to date. Wexford County Council has committed to effective energy management and will meet 2020 public sector energy efficiency targets and has improved performance by 29% in 2019 when compared to the 2009 baseline period. The ISO50001 certification will be the basis of formulating a pathway to reach energy efficiency and carbon target for 2030 and beyond’.

Tom Enright, Chief Executive of Wexford County Council said ‘achieving this standard is a significant accomplishment given the diversity of services that local authorities offer. We are focused and fully committed to continuously improving energy performance in all our operations. This year will see the completion of an extensive public lighting upgrade resulting in significant energy and operational costs savings. Upon completion approximately 97% of the public lights within the county will have been converted to high efficiency LED technology.’

Read more

carlow Kilkenny Wexford energy performance

Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford on Track to Achieve 33% Energy Reduction Target by 2020

  • Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford County Councils are 30.8% more energy efficient than in 2009
  • The three counties avoided 22,700 tonnes of CO2 emissions in the decade 2009-2019

The recently published Annual Report on Public Sector Energy Efficiency Performance covering 2019 shows that the public sector was 29% more energy efficient and on course to achieve its 33% energy efficiency target in 2020, up from 27% the previous year. This is the third year of improved performance in a row, following the introduction of the Public Sector Energy Efficiency Strategy in 2017. The 2019 Climate Action Plan has increased the level of ambition for the public sector for the period up to 2030 by establishing two new complementary targets, a 50% improvement in energy efficiency and a 50% reduction in CO2 emissions.

Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford County Councils have committed to effective energy management to making energy savings and playing their part in meeting the public sector energy efficiency targets by 2030. Local Authorities in Ireland Account for 11% of the total public sector energy consumption. Read more

STEPS e-storage solutions

Press Release: Accelerating innovative e-storage solutions with the STEPS Business Support Programme

Press Release for immediate release: 05/01/2021

Accelerating innovative e-storage solutions with the STEPS Business Support Programme

Kilkenny, IE (5th January 2021) A new business support programme for energy storage companies within North-West Europe launches this month. The Storage of Energy and Power Systems (STEPS) Business Support Programme will support small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in bringing their energy storage solutions to the market. As part of the Interreg North-West Europe (NWE) programme, the STEPS project aims to strengthen the collaboration and competitiveness of businesses in the region and lead NWE to the forefront of energy storage innovation.

 

Applications for SMEs to receive knowledge and business support will open on 11th January 2021. Further details here.

 

The STEPS programme will support 40 businesses through a competitive voucher programme that offers €12,5k worth of assistance from leading universities to each business free of charge. Additionally, 20 of these companies will receive expert support worth €50k each, to demonstrate their technology at regional end-users (testbeds) throughout North-West Europe.

 

The programme combines business support and knowledge partners from Ireland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, and the United Kingdom to strengthen the competitiveness of innovative energy storage solution providers in North-West Europe (NWE).

 

STEPS offers SMEs a user-centric, demand-driven approach to bring their products closer to the market through tailored testing. Specifically, knowledge and business partners will advise e-storage SMEs on entering new markets in North-West Europe, engage with potential end-users, and increase the awareness of solution providers. STEPS will also connect end-users with providers of new e-storage solutions via a business support programme to increase their technological readiness level (TRL) through real-life testing.

 

The opportunity for SMEs to demonstrate their solutions at a real end-user, allows businesses to showcase and develop their e-storage solution, empowering them to scale up and grow their innovation. Additional expert advice on legal, market, and business models will help SMEs reach new customers and successfully grow their business. Through the STEPS programme, energy storage innovators in North-West Europe will solve local challenges and boost their competitiveness in the global market.

 

 “Energy storage innovators in Ireland face significant challenges in getting their solutions to the market, particularly when looking for opportunities to test their technology with real end-users. As experienced facilitators, 3cea is working with other Irish partners to accelerate innovation in our region, to get value from science and technology. We are excited to be part of the sustainable energy transition and we look forward to watching these businesses grow,” Michael Doran, EU Projects Manager 3cea.

 

3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) is a non-profit, independent energy agency working primarily in Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford. 3cea is a leader in sustainable efficient use of locally produced clean energy delivering low carbon homes, jobs and enterprise. 3cea will play a strategic role regionally, partnering with its members and supporting all stakeholders on their energy transition journey to 2030 and beyond. 3cea will continue to play a leading role in the region by initiating exemplar local actions, working in collaboration with our member groups.

 

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More information

 

Business support programme website: https://www.stepsnwe-application.com/

STEPS website: https://www.nweurope.eu/projects/project-search/steps-storage-of-energy-power-systems-in-nwe/

STEPS Twitter: https://twitter.com/stepsnwe

STEPS LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/stepsnwe/

 

Contact

 

Michael Doran

EU Projects Manager

3cea

mdoran@3cea.ie

 

Patrick Cantwell

Marketing & Communications Officer

3cea

pcantwell@3cea.ie

 

For more information on the STEPS project, visit our dedicated webpage.

Press Release pdf available here.

IESA Calls for National Green Hydrogen Strategy

The Irish Energy Storage Association (IESA) has called upon the government to establish a Hydrogen Task Force to develop a National Green Hydrogen Strategy. 

Recently, the European Commission launched its strategy document entitled “A hydrogen strategy for a climate-neutral Europe” in which it states “hydrogen [is] essential to support the EU’s commitment to reach carbon neutrality by 2050 and for the global effort to implement the Paris Agreement while working towards zero pollution”. Additionally, similar hydrogen strategies have been formulated by the Netherlands, Germany and Portugal as well as China, Japan and Australia.

The Irish Energy Storage Association believes that immediate action is required from the Irish Government if we are not to be left behind by our fellow EU-Members and the wider global economy in this rapidly developing green hydrogen economy.

Read the IESA Press Release in full here.

For more information visit The Irish Energy Storage Association Website

bioenergy ireland

The Irish Bioenergy opportunity is immense – Paddy Phelan elected as the new President of the The Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA)

Press Release: 29/05/2020

This week the new President and Vice President of the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) were elected by the Management Executive Committee of the organisation. Paddy Phelan, CEO of 3 County Energy Agency was elected the new President and Maurice Ryan, Director and Business Development at Green Belt was elected the new Vice President. They both take up their roles at a time of great opportunity for the organisation and the Irish Bioenergy sector as the economy begins to reopens again following Covid 19.

Accepting the new role, IrBEA President Paddy Phelan said “I am delighted to take on the role as President of IrBEA. I look forward to working with members and all stakeholders for the betterment of the sector. The Irish Bioenergy opportunity is immense. This opportunity has yet to be recognised at a political or policy level with adequate action and support measures which are necessary for the widespread deployment of bioenergy. Sustainably produced bioenergy will play a key role in Irelands transition from a fossil-fuel based economy to a low carbon economy. The bioenergy sectors covering biomass, biogas, biofuels, energy crops and wood fuels, are a key part of the overall bioeconomy and have a significant part to play in its growth and development. As well as contributing towards Ireland’s renewable energy targets, the sector can be the catalyst to drive jobs and economic growth in rural Ireland while assisting to address the climate change and emissions reduction challenges we face as a country and people”. Read more

The launch of 3 Counties Energy Agency Energy Transition Strategy 2020-2030

Click here to see photos from the event.

Regional Partnership to Locally Deliver at Scale to Meet 2030 Climate Action Targets

The 3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) works locally and regionally, across Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford, as a trusted intermediary, to support and co-ordinate actions on the ground that contribute to the larger goals of the Climate Action Plan.

We are delighted to be launching our Regional Strategy to 2030 – a strategy that helps map the path we are going to have to follow together. The partnership underpins the capacity to deliver the Climate Action Plan at the regional level through public and private actors supported by the 3cea as the Trusted Intermediary.

Read more