3CEA gains Engineers Ireland CPD Accredited Employer status

Press Release

The 3 Counties Energy Agency is celebrating after gaining Engineers Ireland accreditation for its commitment to the continuous professional development (CPD) of its 23-strong staff which includes Engineers, Technicians, Marketing and Administrative employees.

The 20 year-old Agency is now an Engineers Ireland continuous professional development (CPD) Accredited Employer and part of an exclusive network of organisations that have demonstrated commitment to the professional development of their staff. The much-coveted best practice framework accreditation will help the agency to recruit and retain talented staff and win projects.

The not-for-profit 3cea has worked tirelessly across the southeast since its inception in 2002 to move the region to a low carbon, clean energy future. It has grown its team over that time from just three to 23 employees.

3cea works with communities, local authorities, businesses and the general public across counties Carlow, Kilkenny, Wexford, Waterford and further afield in the renewable energy sector. The highly-regarded and highly skilled team at 3cea is constantly researching and upskilling, expanding its knowledge in energy saving, energy storage and production.

Paddy Phelan, 3cea CEO, paid tribute to the entire team, particularly those who worked on achieving Engineers Ireland’s CPD Accredited Employer Standard and said: “Continued professional development is essential for 3cea. We work in an a rapidly changing industry with new technologies, new standards, new requirements coming to market all the time. We work hard to ensure our entire team is prepared for all of these challenges. Providing a good CPD offering provides exciting opportunities for our team to develop and grow.

 

From left, are: Paddy Phelan (CEO 3cea), Colm 0’Mahony (Energy Engineer), Caroline Spillane (Director General – Engineers Ireland), Michael Deen (Communications Officer), Ralf Kampe (Eu Project Officer), John Carley (Chairman 3cea) and Bill Lowe (Office Manager) Photo Vicky Comerford

“We are committed to career development and to helping meet acute skills shortages within our sector world-wide. With this in mind, we offer work placement and graduate opportunities to third level students in this region. Many of these undergraduates have gone on to join our team over the years,” Mr Phelan said.

Congratulating 3cea on achieving Engineers Ireland’s CPD Accredited Employer Standard, Caroline Spillane, Director General of Engineers Ireland, said: “I would like to congratulate 3cea for their dedication to professional development and achieving CPD Accredited Employer status. It is clear that 3cea has a strong commitment to supporting the professional growth of its staff and the organisation has successfully created a culture of innovation where creative thinking is encouraged and supported.

“Investment in professional development is essential for organisations to grow and develop their people. This investment ensures career progression and success for employees’ while also ensuring continued growth and market success.  Having experienced rapid growth in the South-East, I believe 3cea will continue to benefit significantly from the strategic approach facilitated by the CPD Accredited Employer Standard,” Ms Spillane added.

Gráinne Kennedy, Energy Engineer with 3cea, led the accreditation bid and commented: “Over a quarter of our team are Engineers Ireland affiliated and more are to join throughout the year. Others are working toward Chartered Engineer status. 3cea has a very strong policy that supports employees who want to extend their knowledge and join professional organisations. Such an ethos drives continuous professional development and augurs well for the future of 3cea and the energy transition across the South-East region into the future.”

Explore a career with us

If you think you are the right person to help reshape the energy landscape future, send your CV and a cover letter to Bill at blowe@3cea.ie explaining more about yourself and your ambitions, visit www.3cea.ie/careers

About Engineers Ireland’s CPD Accredited Employer Standard

The Engineers Ireland CPD Accredited Employer standard is a strategic framework which enables engineers and engineering employers to raise competency levels and deliver tangible business benefits by investing in engineers through continuing professional development. For more information, visit: http://www.engineersireland.ie/cpd-training/cpd-accredited-employer-scheme.aspx

THE SOUTHEAST SURPASSES ENERGY REDUCTION TARGETS AND SAVES €20M

TWO DECADES OF 3 Counties Energy Agency SUCCESS 

The County Councils of Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford working closely with 3 Counties Energy Agency (3CEA), have not only met but all exceeded the 33% energy reduction target set in the National Climate Action Plan.  

3CEA was set up in 2002, and developed partnerships with the County Councils, SMEs, Communities and citizens making their Energy Transition journey smoother. 

“It is really making a difference. 3CEA technical support ensures that project opportunities are identified and acted upon promptly where practical. The 3 Counties Energy Agency worked with the Councils’ Energy Teams to deliver projects that will deliver ongoing long term sustained energy reduction in each case resulting in a cumulative saving of €19.97M. All three Local Authorities are participating in a number of EU energy-saving projects with the assistance of 3CEA,” says Paddy Phelan, CEO of 3CEA.

Energy efficiency remains a priority to deliver further improvements and the County Councils of Kilkenny, Carlow and Wexford have been joined by Waterford city and County in 2021, all with the same mission of optimising their energy efficiency actions. 

“3CEA work in collaboration with the Local Authorities to evaluate, pilot and deliver great energy and carbon saving projects across their own building, public lighting & transport stock. The role of the Local Authorities to lead by example and good examples of this partnership are projects being delivered through various national grant programmes such as the Department of Environment, Climate & Communications Climate Action Fund and the SEAI’s Community Energy Grants. These are led by the Local Authorities, coordinated and managed by the Energy Agency, who are working with the many SME’s, communities and homeowners delivering projects right across the south east. This model of partnership is key to our success and to the success of the energy transition in the South East. The Local Authorities are playing their part and have met their own 2020 targets, with projects planned to ensure they meet the more ambitious 2030 targets. We, that is society as a whole, need to change our behaviour and reduce our reliance on imported fossil fuels. Everyone must play a part and 3CEA are here, to offer independent advice to all who want to make a difference,” said Alex Hamilton, 3CEA Senior Engineer.

CARLOW INCREASED EFFICIENCY BY 40%

Carlow County Council achieved 40% improvement in energy efficiency by delivering 17 energy saving projects, for example in public lighting (with long lasting LED bulbs and photocell controls saving 29,000 euro per annum), zero energy housing, and a revamp of the Carlow Fire Station heating system and addition of solar panels.

In everyday terms this is the equivalent of making 140 million cups of tea, or 63000 journeys from Malin Head to Mizen Head, a carbon emission reduction of 7000 tons. Growing numbers of homeowners are availing of grants to carry out energy upgrades and deep retrofits and the county is now 39.9% more energy efficient, beating the 33.3% target.

KILKENNY SAVED ENOUGH ENERGY TO BREW 670 MILLION CUPPAS

Kilkenny County Council saved energy for 670 million cups of tea and 59000 trips the length of the country reducing emissions by 6500 tonnes. This produced a saving of 2.6 million euro for the Council, delivering a saving of 41.6%, well above the 33.3% target. Public Lighting is the single biggest user of energy for the Council and multiple upgrades, including in the Kilkenny Machinery Yard have been carried out. Heating reduction such as in Castlecomer Library contributed to the overall energy reduction.

YOU COULD LAP WEXFORD 43,000 TIMES WITH ENERGY SAVED

Wexford saved 269 million cups of tea or the amount of energy used by a typical family petrol car doing 43000 laps of the Wexford county boundary, reducing CO2 emissions by 2149 tonnes through avoided energy use, delivering a saving of 39.7%. The spectrum of projects and initiatives implemented by the Wexford County Council to achieve energy efficiency include the public lighting energy efficiency project whereby 91% of public lights across the county were replaced with more energy efficient LED bulbs. This gave a 65% reduction in energy use and 60% savings in operation and maintenance costs. Energy upgrades in Bunclody Fire Station, Gorey Library and the Council’s Machinery Yard all delivered substantial energy savings. The Council has also started transitioning their fleet to electric vehicles to further support the national policy and decarbonise local communities making them healthier and better places to live in.

 

3CEA CEO, Paddy Phelan added that “While local authorities in the region have done much to achieve lower C02 emissions by 2030, individual counties working under the Sustainable Energy Action Plans need to step up across Transport, Agriculture, Industry and Community.”

3cea Pilot State of the Art Energy Efficient Homes in Carlow & Kilkenny

Construction has begun 8 new energy efficient homes in Carlow & Kilkenny that are part of a NWE Interreg Housing 4.0 Energy (H4.0E) an EU project to lower embodied emissions in house builds and in time reduce the cost of construction by utilising a Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) model and ensuring the houses are built to nZEB (near Zero Energy Building) standard by using prefabricated timber-frame closed panels or low-carbon GGBS cement composites and energy-saving efforts like installation of Photovoltaic cables and heat pumps. The 2 bedroom and single bedroom houses are located in St Mary’s court in Carlow town, in Mullinivat and Graiguenamanagh (at the old Fire Station)  in Co. Kilkenny.

Construction site for H4.0E houses in St Mary’s court, Carlow town.

Construction site for H4.0E houses in St Mary’s court, Carlow town.

“3cea were delighted to lead this initiative and to secure Irish funding of over 600K from a Europe-wide fund of 4.2 million made available by the European Regional Development Fund through the Interred NorthWest Europe scheme to make this pilot project happen,” said Communications Officer Colin Healy. “H4.0E-nZEBs or ZEB builds are a must for future construction to meet both Ireland’s housing needs and carbon mitigation goals. The Irish H4.0E pilots are not using full DfMA methods in the pilot project, but when they come fully on stream through the availability of the H4.0E Platform being developed by Open Systems Lab (OSL) as part of the H4.0E project we anticipate that building costs will be reduced by 25% using these methods. The H4.0E houses in the upscaling process will be far cheaper to run and substantial carbon emission reductions will be achieved both in embodied and operational carbon. Heating and domestic hot water are where most of the energy will be used and these are warmer better-insulated homes. All houses are fitted with heat pumps.

 

The houses, referred to as H4.0E houses are part of a plan to develop affordable zero-energy houses by applying new technology to building and running the houses. A carbon reduction of at least 50% to 80%, when compared to a standard concrete/brick build house,  will be achieved. All units will be completed towards the end of this year and will be used for social housing by Carlow and Kilkenny County Councils.

You can learn more about H4.0E and 3cea’s activities in the project through our H4.0E Webpage.

SEAI Solar PV for Business Guide

The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) have published their latest guide on Solar PV to help your business understand solar PV technology and to support you to deliver a solar PV project. It explores the key areas of site suitability, as well as the technological and practical issues involved in a typical solar PV project.
This guide is a fantastic starting point for any business interested in adopting Solar as part of their energy supply.

Solar PV will play a pivotal role in the nation’s Climate Action commitments to reduce greenhouse emissions by 51% by 2030 and achieve a climate-neutral economy by 2050.

The southeast receives more light energy from the sun than any other region, which means businesses in the southeast have the potential to generate more solar energy than other regions of the country.

3 Counties Energy Agency responds to Climate Action Plan

The publication of the Climate Action Plan (CAP) 2021 by Government last week was broadly welcomed by the stakeholders working to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and the resulting environmental damage that they cause.

3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) are positively enthused by the continued effort and commitment to solving the most pressing problem facing civilisation with a particular focus on de-carbonising the Irish energy system. 3cea also welcome the continuing focus on enabling communities, seeing this as important to the future management of our energy provision and use. But they also urge some caution.

CAP 2019 included an annexe with 183 specified actions, each with a timeline and specification of who was responsible for implementing the change. CAP 2021 lists 475 required actions. Paddy Phelan, CEO of 3cea, notes an important change.

3cea CEO Paddy Phelan on the ‘The Way It Is Show’ with Sue Nunn on KCLR:

Read more

New Date Confirmed! Free webinar to highlight local opportunities for renewable energy projects

Organisers have now confirmed a new date, the new event date is scheduled on Thursday, 2nd December 2021 at 9:30-11:30.

More communities than ever before are coming together to develop renewable energy projects in their own localities, according to a Kilkenny-based energy engineer. A recent study conducted by Mullan Grid Consulting, for 3cea with funding from Kilkenny Leader Partnership, highlights the electricity grid’s capacity for renewable energy projects in County Kilkenny.

Register here: https://webinar-on-the-kilkenny-grid-study-findings.eventbrite.ie

Agenda

• 9:30am – Part 1 – Introduction

• 9:40am – Grid Study Findings

• 10:20am – Q&A

• 10:30am – Break

• 10:45am – Part 2 – Introduction

• 10:50am – Community Renewable Project

• 11:30am – Q&A

• 11:45am – End

After registering, you will receive further information from the team about joining the Event.

The event will be hosted on Zoom.

If you would like to be updated on when that event will be please email events@3cea.ie

 


 

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.

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 energy costs and cut down on harmful carbon emissions:

“What we have particularly noticed 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, June 22 through Zoom and community groups and representatives can register for this FREE online webinar at http://3cea.ie/event/

For more information on 3cea’s range of community programmes, visit: https://3cea.ie/sectors/community/

The Kilkenny Grid Study is available here for communities who wish to see the potential in their area for a renewable energy project.

To learn more about our community group projects, visit our communities page here.

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