Kilkenny County Council

Kilkenny County Council achieve ISO 50001 Certification

Kilkenny County Council recently achieved ISO 50001 Standard for their energy use, guiding the council to the 50% energy efficiency improvement target set for 2030.

The ISO 50001 certification is a global standard for energy use and energy consumption. It recognises Kilkenny County Council‘s commitment to continuously improve their energy performance.

Kilkenny County Council ISO

Paddy Phelan, CEO for 3cea, Cllr. Andrew McGuinness, Cathaoirleach, Kilkenny County Council, and Anne Marie Shortall, Senior Executive Officer, Environment, Kilkenny County Council PICTURE: Vicky Comerford

Andrew McGuinness, Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council, welcomed the news of the ISO 50001 certification.

“I am delighted that the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) following an extensive audit have confirmed that the Council’s energy systems comply with the ISO 50001 standard,” he said.

“This is the culmination of many years of work by the staff of Kilkenny County Council, in particular the energy team who have worked hard to achieve the standard and I commend them for their efforts.”

Senior staff in all departments in the council participate in their energy team. The energy team play a significant role in the management of energy from their office buildings, to public lighting and the council’s fleet of vehicles.

We at 3cea were delighted to support Kilkenny County Council in their journey to achieving the ISO 50001 energy standard.

Collette Byrne, Chief Executive of Kilkenny County Council, highlighted the role each member in the council plays when it comes to energy management.

“Our commitment to improving energy performance is reflected in our Energy Policy and in our Climate Action Charter,” she said.

“The ISO 50001 standard will help us deliver the target of 50% improvement in energy efficiency over the next 10 years as set in the National Climate Action Plan.”

In terms of energy efficiency, Kilkenny County Council have also achieved the 33% target set for Local Authorities in 2020. This achievement, along with the most recent ISO 50001 accreditation, puts the council in a great position to tackle the ambitious targets set for 2030.

To continuously improve, the council take on many tasks such as, tracking energy consumption, setting energy targets, undertaking energy audits and looking to increase energy efficiency.

Over the years, Kilkenny County Council have conducted various projects to improve their energy performance. One such project is the Public Lighting Energy Efficiency project where the council upgraded 11,000 public lights across the county with more energy efficient LED lanterns (over 50% completed to date).

Similar projects include the upgrading of their buildings with improved heating systems and upgraded building fabric; energy saving controls and sensor systems installed in council offices and for their transport fleet, the council implemented an eco- driver training programme.

To learn more about how we support Local Authorities, visit our Public Sector page here.

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.’

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Easter

Happy Easter!

10 ways to be sustainable this Easter weekend

Switch off!

Remember to turn the TV off after use. Leaving devices on standby wastes energy and can increase your electricity bills. A simple tip to reduce your energy consumption: if it’s not being used, switch it off. The same applies to lights, other household appliances and even your car. Switching off your car when you stop or pull over can reduce your carbon emissions, as leaving your engine idling can have an impact on your environment.

Open up your blinds

Opening up your blinds or curtains can brighten up your home. Use as much natural light as possible before switching on lights or lamps. Plus you can enjoy some more sunshine (while we have it!).

Turn down the heating

Try to keep your heating switched off for as long as possible. When you do get cold, try wearing an extra jumper or wrap up in a cosy blanket.

Recycle those Easter Eggs

After you’ve eaten all of your Easter eggs, you may be left with a lot of packaging. Remember to recycle the appropriate materials and correctly place them in the designated bin. Visit the EPA website for more recycling tips.

Get walking

Over this Easter weekend, swap in a walk instead of a drive when travelling within your 5km. Walking off the Easter eggs will benefit your health and wellbeing too.

Switch to reusable water bottle

When out and about, why not bring a reusable water bottle with you instead of buying single use plastic bottles. This is a simple change that anyone can make to live more sustainably.

Don’t forget your reusable grocery bags

Bring a reusable bag when you go shopping this weekend. Keep a few in the car or near the front door of your home so you don’t forget.

Buy your food locally

A shorter food chain can reduce waste before it reaches your home. Try buying your food this weekend from your local supermarket who supports food producers in your area.

Avoid food waste

Over the weekend, try to avoid food waste as much as possible. You can reduce your food waste by planning your meals in advance, saving your leftovers, and learning how to properly store food.

Spread the word

When speaking with friends and family this weekend, spread the word on your sustainable activities. Opening up the conversation on sustainability will help others to develop a new frame of mind. Setting an example for others can be both powerful and influential.

From all of us here at 3cea, we wish you and your family a very Happy Easter weekend!

Communities

Over 500 Communities engaging in SEAI Sustainable Energy Community Network

The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) announced an increase in community groups joining their Sustainable Energy Communities Network.

SEAI recently reported that there has been higher engagement with their Sustainable Energy Communities Network as many new communities across Ireland have become Sustainable Energy Communities (SECs) this year.

Over 500 communities have become SEC members, with up to 25,000 citizens making a difference in their locality. Each of these SEC groups are progressing towards a low carbon future by implementing energy efficient measures in all aspects of the community, including their homes, shops, sports clubs and community buildings. Read more from SEAIs announcement here.

Of the 500 communities engaging in the SEC Programme, we at 3cea are delighted to see that over 60 of the communities are from the South East Region. Take a look at the SEC Map on the SEAI website to find your community.

For more information on community programmes and successful projects, visit: https://3cea.ie/sectors/community/

 

Home Retrofit

3cea partner with ERI to provide home retrofit service for homeowners in the South East

3 Counties Energy Agency have partnered with ERI Managed Energy Solutions to deliver SEAI’s National Home Retrofit Scheme.

Homeowners in the South East of Ireland who wish to improve their home’s BER rating are being advised to apply for a new retrofit scheme which offers 35% grant aid.

Stephen Harte, Managing Director of ERI, offers his expertise on the new retrofitting scheme.

Stephen, the founder of ERI, has an Engineering qualification from University of Limerick with 30 years’ experience in the building and commercial sectors.

ERI specialises in helping homeowners with deep energy retrofits. Since starting in 2007, ERI  have carried out over 1,000 building energy assessments and consulted on hundreds of low energy construction projects.” 

In the last five years Stephen has spent three years as Project Manager for the deep retrofit scheme from its inception as a pilot in 2015 through to 2018. Stephen has also been involved in the management of over 150 end to end whole house retrofits in that time.

What is the National Home Retrofit Scheme?  Read more

3cea CEO Paddy Phelan discusses Microgeneration on Morning Ireland

3cea were asked to participate in a radio interview on microgeneration for the Morning Ireland show on RTE 1 Radio this morning.

The news piece featured on the show between 7 and 8am with a panel of speakers discussing the benefits to microgeneration.

The news piece included insights from Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications Eamon Ryan, 3 Counties Energy Agency CEO Paddy Phelan, Tommy O’Shea of O’Shea Farms, Piltown Co. Kilkenny and Dara Lynott, CEO of the Electricity Association of Ireland.

Listen to the interview in full here.

 

 

Sustainable Regions in Action 2021

FEDARENE have recently launched their “Sustainable Regions in Action” yearly publication which offers a look into the projects European regions and their energy agencies are implementing. 

The most recent edition of the annual publication highlights the work of local and regional authorities, island states and the energy agencies within each of them.

FEDARENE provide an overview of their activities over the past year and their perspectives for the future. A selection of their members’ most inspiring projects are also included. These projects are divided in 12 categories including:

  • Adapting and planning in times of climate crisis;
  • Accelerating Island’s Energy Transition;
  • Energy communities: citizens’ action for cleaner energy;
  • Financing responsible projects for a brighter future;
  • Enhancing Industry and SMEs’ responsibility;
  • Setting up energy efficiency measures;
  • Sustaining Renewables Sources;
  • Highway to Eco-mobility;
  • Tackling Energy Poverty;
  • Circular Economy;
  • Healthy Environment, Healthy Citizens!
  • Educating, training and raising awareness.

3 Counties Energy Agency feature in this publication under the Accelerating Island’s Energy Transition category. Take a look at what we shared on page 19.

Read the publication here: Sustainable Regions in Action 2021

 

Sustainable Energy Communities Workshop

3cea will be hosting a free online workshop for Sustainable Energy Communities in the South East on 3rd February 2021.

The aim of this event is to relaunch the SEC programme for 2021. Whether you are a community who is reaching some of your energy goals, or you are a group who is struggling to work through the steps of the programme, 2020 was a tough year for us all. 2021 provides us with new opportunities and supports for making our community energy plans a reality.

Join 3cea in this workshop to meet other communities, to learn from each other and to see what is possible for your community.

Gráinne Kennedy of 3 Counties Energy Agency will host the hour-long online event and provide helpful tips to encourage communities in the South East of the country to fully engage with the SEC programme. This event will also give the communities an opportunity to network and share ideas.

This online event will offer a chance for all attendee’s to

  • Meet other communities working to create Sustainable Energy Communities
  • Meet the South East SEC team
  • Understand the changing fields of renewable energy and energy efficiency
  • Ask questions on how to approach organising in your community

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYqcOmurz4oHdzbSaSl2tg8wbujzWQN5ZeY

Date & Time: Wednesday, 3rd February 2021 at 11am

Agenda:

  • 11am – Introduction
  • 11.10am – Your hopes for your SEC community
  • 11.30am – What is possible?
  • 11.40am – 3 things communities have learned.
  • 11.50am – Supports on offer from County Mentors
  • 12pm – Summation Q&A

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

For more information on community programmes and successful projects, visit: https://3cea.ie/sectors/community/

We look forward to your participation. For any queries, please contact Mari or Patrick on events@3cea.ie

 

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.

STEPS e-storage solutions

STEPS Business Support Programme will launch in January 2021

The STEPS Business Support Programme will kick start the new EU project in the New Year.

STEPS (Storage of Energy & Power Systems) is a new European project bringing the innovative industry of energy storage to Irish SMEs. Project partners from Ireland, the Netherlands, Belgium, France and the UK will increase the energy storage industry in North West Europe (NWE). Each nation will encourage innovative energy storage providers to develop their energy storage solution to become market ready.

Overall, the STEPS project hopes to advise more than 200 energy storage local SMEs on entering new markets in NWE. STEPS wishes to create market pull effects in NWE for new energy storage solutions by engaging with potential end-users needs and increase awareness of solution providers.

STEPS Logo

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