3 Counties Energy Agency offers free Audits to 150 Irish SMEs

Information Session on free Audits to 150 Irish SMEs to begin their sustainable journey: https://bit.ly/CANCapSME 

 

Businesses in the South East of Ireland can now access free energy audits under the Climate Active Neighbourhoods Capitalisation Project (CAN Cap) scheme.

 

Offered by energy experts, 3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea), the free audits aim to help businesses improve sustainable measures and reduce costs. Businesses in the South East are urged to sign-up as there are only 150 free energy audits available.

 

Date for the Diary: Free Information Session Tuesday November 2nd at 12 pm

 

3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) has arranged a free online information session on Tuesday, November 2nd at midday to explain who can apply for the free energy audits, what SMEs can expect from it and how to apply for one of the limited places available. You can register for this event by clicking here.

 

The CAN Cap energy audit is available for free to businesses with fewer than 50 employees in the Southeast region from the following sectors:

 

  • Nursing homes and healthcare providers
  • Food producersfarm foods plants
  • Convenience grocery stores and supermarkets
  • Office blocks and property management companies

 

The audits are offered exclusively by 3 Counties Energy Agency having become Irish members of the global network, the Climate Alliance, based in Germany, a partnership of nine EU countries working together for climate action.

 

Alexandra Hamilton, Senior Energy Engineer with 3cea said

 

The free audits are an opportunity for businesses to reduce energy usage and costs, lower their CO2 emissions and make a very positive impact on climate change. Following completion of an audit, the business will receive an energy usage report. 3cea will advise on how to reduce energy bills and develop practical, sustainable energy measures. Companies may also qualify for further grant assistance for upgrades such as solar panels, energy-efficient heating or cooling systems, insulation, or upgrade to LED lighting. Our auditors will always advise on any grants that may be available.”

 

Free energy audits are available with no obligation, as part of an Interreg North-West Europe (NWE) Development Project called CAN Cap. Businesses that are interested in exploring can visit https://3cea.ie/cancap-offers-free-energy-reports-for-irish-smes/ and express their interest by filling out the CAN Cap enquiry form.

We’re Hiring!

Exciting job opportunities in Kilkenny! Closing date for all applications is Friday the 12th November 2021 at 5pm. Join our growing team and apply via 3cea.ie/careers

Kilkenny communities putting shoulder to wheel with renewable energy projects – Free webinar to highlight local opportunities

On November 4th, 3 Counties Energy Agency will host a two-part event for communities interested in developing a renewable energy project.

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.

Duncan Stewart keeps an eco-eye on Kilkenny

Duncan Stewart keeps an eco-eye on Kilkenny – Booking now open for the free Green for Micro conference

Irish environmentalist Duncan Stewart, well-known as the host of RTÉ’s Eco Eye since 2002, will offer his expertise and guidance to businesses across Kilkenny. Exclusively available to businesses in the South East, enterprises are invited to attend the free Green for Micro conference on Friday 15th October at 9.30 am, hosted online via Zoom. To register visit: www.localenterprise.ie/Kilkenny

The Green for Micro conference offers a unique opportunity to learn how to cut harmful emissions and make significant energy and bottom-line savings. It aims to support small businesses in the South East and break down environmental and sustainability challenges for their business.

Keynote speaker, Duncan Stewart, will share his insights on how vital it is for businesses to address environmental issues within their business and how this will ensure the sustainability of small enterprises into the future. Expert speakers from 3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea) and the Southern Region Waste Management office will share useful tips on how to make simple changes, for example, how to manage waste in your business and how to access funding support for greener practises. The panel of speakers will demonstrate how investing time and resources in green issues will ultimately benefit small businesses.

The programme will begin with an introduction and welcome from Fiona Deegan, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny. She commented, “We want to encourage small businesses to learn more about how they can help Ireland move toward a greener net-zero economy. Beyond that, sustainable decisions make financial sense. We hope people will join us on October 15th to find out more.”

Grainne Kennedy, Energy Engineer, 3cea said, “Even the smallest change in a businesses’ consciousness and tweaks to its manufacturing processes can make a big difference. Any business of any size can have a profound effect on the environment. We’re looking forward to telling people about the South East Green for Micro programme and how they can access funding to start their green journey today.”

Led by the Local Enterprise Offices in the South East, in partnership with 3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea), the South East Green for Micro programme was launched in April 2019, funded by Enterprise Ireland to assist local businesses with their low carbon transition.  3cea, an independent, not-for-profit energy agency, offered technical assistance for the project, helping participating enterprises examine their energy, waste, water, procurement and transport needs and make more informed, environmentally-friendly choices.

 

For more information about energy grants available in the South East, visit www.3cea.ie. To learn more about the Green for Micro conference on Friday 15th October at 9.30 am, hosted online, visit: www.localenterprise.ie/kilkenny

 

Maribor Meeting

European Energy Agencies Gather in Maribor, Slovenia

3cea CEO Paddy Phelan represented Ireland at the FEDARENE annual meetings held in Slovenia from the 14th – 16th of September 2021

The Slovenian city of Maribor was the location for the 2021 FEDARENE annual meetings, where energy agencies from across the continent gathered for events which ran over three days. The European wide event involved many energy agencies from countries including Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, France, Ireland, Romania, Slovenia and Spain.

Paddy Phelan, 3 Counties Energy Agency CEO, attended the annual meetings and represented Ireland. Paddy participated in an exchange of best practices and inspiring projects related to energy efficiency, renewable energy and climate planning during his time there. Presentations were made from energy agencies on the topics of collaboration with public bodies, engaging with citizen energy groups, implementing local energy strategies and smart villages.

During the 2021 FEDARENE General Assembly, the members elected fellow Irish man Seamus Hoyne as the Secretary General once again. Congratulations to Seamus, who is re-elected in the position for the next 3 years. The FEDARENE members have chosen to keep Seamus in the position, praising him for the good work he continues to achieve.

Take a look at the photo gallery from the event below.

To learn more about 3cea’s involvement with European projects, visit our Innovation Webpage here.

Irish SMEs Enter The STEPS Voucher 1

Four Irish SMEs enter the STEPS Voucher 1 scheme, after being chosen from the second call of STEPS. Two of these have been chosen by 3cea who will act as the Business Support Partner, the other two will be assisted by Galway Energy Co-Op. The SMEs that 3cea will be assisting are Sunstream Energy based in Waterford and Crest Pro Power based in Sligo.

Crest Pro Power offers energy storage solutions for large businesses to enable them to store energy generated during low-tariff periods and use it at high-tariff times. This solution can be incorporated with a PV Solar system to store excess PV generation making it both cost-effective and more carbon-neutral than using solar PV alone. Crest Pro Power customers can benefit from revenue streams through demand response schemes where the customer can benefit from having the battery available to the Grid for fixed payments.

Sunstream Energy’s battery storage system comprises about 200 KWh (2 tonnes) capacity for the ice builder in combination with a 10 KWh Li-ion battery. Both storage mediums are charged using surplus solar PV energy taken in during the day. This excess energy is then used throughout the night when the refrigeration units would normally have to take from the grid.  The solar PV system, ice builder, refrigeration plant, and battery system hardware have found use in dairy farms with one already installed on a farm in Waterford. However, there are still further innovations to be made and knowledge gaps to fill and so Sunstream Energy hopes to build on their current product through the Interreg NWE STEPS programme.

As these Irish SMEs enter the STEPS Voucher 1, they will get the opportunity to fill these knowledge gaps. The first voucher support has the SMEs working with the STEPS knowledge partners across Europe to benefit from a plethora of experience and understanding around energy storage. Initially, all four Irish SMEs were working with the National University of Ireland Galway. Now, they will gain further expertise from a European Knowledge partner that’s specifically suited to their needs. These are TU Delft, Universiteit Twente, Universiteit Gent, The Faraday Institution, and NUIG.

After 6 months with their knowledge partner, one SME from 3cea’s cohort, and one SME from Galway Energy Co-Op’s cohort will continue in the STEPS business support programme and enter the Voucher 2 Support. This is the support that Tipperary-based Clean Tech are currently receiving. For Voucher 2 of the Second Call, the chosen SME in 3cea’s cohort will get the opportunity to test their energy storage solution in O’Shea’s farm. O’Shea’s Farm is a Kilkenny-based farm that provides fresh vegetable produce to supermarkets across the country, resulting in year-round electricity demand for refrigerated cold storage and grading equipment at their site. They currently have 250 KWp (Kilo-Watt potential) solar PVs installed on the farm which they are looking to extend. O’Shea’s Farm is hoping that an energy storage solution will allow them to store excess intake during the day, which can be stored as cold storage and used to power the refrigerators for the vegetables overnight. You can learn more about O’Shea’s farm and their involvement in the STEPS project from our STEPS Testbed Video

To learn more about STEPS and 3cea’s work in the Interreg NWE STEPS project see our dedicated STEPS webpage

ENERGee Watch Online Courses Begin

This Wednesday, 15th of September, the ENERGee Watch Online Courses begin with Course 3 Indicators and Strategies on Adaptation to Climate Change. This is the first of four courses that will take place across the three cycles of the ENERGee Watch programme. The aims of the ENERGee WATCH peer-to-peer learning programme are to enable regional and local authorities to timely and accurately define, monitor, and verify their sustainable actions. The course material will focus on regional/provincial authorities and their agencies. These groups are responsible for collecting and monitoring GHG reduction efforts and results. The groups will be targeted to empower them to use best practices in their efforts. ENERGee Watch is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.

The programme will take place across three cycles. Each cycle has the same four courses and tutors and will all contain a visit to the tutor’s country. However, the content of the courses may change each year based on the feedback from the previous group in the previous cycle. Through this, the course can adapt to the needs of regional/local authorities.

We expect, by the end of the ENERGee Watch peer learning programme, regional and local authorities will have improved abilities and skills to collect energy and climate data, monitor said data, verify it and then report the data for their sustainable energy action plans. We also hope that the peer-to-peer nature of the programme will foster future collaborations and partnerships.

Course 3: Indicators and Strategies on Adaptation to Climate Change

ENERGee Watch Online Courses begin with Course 3, which is dedicated to the adaptation to climate change initiatives and aims to clarify the concept, provide keys to understanding this discipline, and shed light on the methodologies, systems, and tools to support public actors in their climate change efforts. The aim of the exercise is to guide participants in building their own roadmap to ensure that adaptation to climate change is fully integrated into energy-climate action plans. To this end, the adaptation course will be organised into three sessions:

• Session 1: Setting the basics: climate change adaptation and assessment
• Session 2: Establishing the diagnosis: methods and data
• Session 3: Drawing up a strategy and action plan: methods and roles of indicators

Session 1 of this course took place Wednesday 16th.

Each of the 3-hour sessions will, in turn, be divided into two periods of the following:

Session 1: Setting the basics: climate change adaptation and assessment
– Period 1: The fundamentals of adaptation to climate change
– Period 2: The fundamentals of assessment for adaptation
Session 2: Diagnosis: methods and data
– Period 1: Drawing up the diagnosis
– Period 2: Tools associated with the diagnosis (representation, deliverable, sharing)
Session 3: Designing a strategy and an action plan: methods and roles of indicators
– Period 1: Strategy development
– Period 2: Practical exercise

Target of Course 3 Indicators and Strategies on Adaptation to Climate Change

The course is particularly aimed at territorial public actors responsible for energy-climate policies and the structures (e.g., local energy agency) supporting them in the deployment of these policies. The objective is to facilitate the inclusion of adaptation to climate change and the transition to action in order to face the current and future challenges for the territories.

Course objectives
In this course, mentees can achieve the following learning objectives:

  • Objective 1: To appropriate the concepts and notions associated with adaptation to climate change.
  • Objective 2: To understand the challenges in one’s territory, to understand the climate impacts and associated effects
  • Objective 3: To be able to prefigure an adaptation to climate change policy on its territory
  • Objective 4: To draw on the associated methods and tools, in particular, to assess the adaptation policies

Mentors

Sandra Garrigou (pictured left) has been assisting local authorities in drawing up their climate plans since 2008. Sandra has developed an expertise in the field of adaptation to climate change, particularly in the framework of a partnership agreement with ADEME (e.g. projects: organisation of territorial workshops to raise awareness among local authorities). She is also a doctoral student on this subject at the “Territories, cities, environment & society” research unit at the University of Lille.

Erwan Cordeau, is a senior expert in the field of adaptation to climate change, supports the design of the course. His work has focused on urban heat and on the development of territorial diagnosis in the field of adaptation.

Agnès Parnaix, is a senior expert in the field of public policy assessment, will contribute to the session dealing with evaluation, data processing, and the choice of indicators. Agnès has participated in the work on the assessment of regional planning.

To learn more about ENERGee Watch keep an eye on the News Section of our website as we release information for each course as they start. You can also see the Horizon2020 ENERGee Watch Website for information and updates

Free Energy Audits Offered by 3cea Through CAN Cap Programme

Free energy audits offered to 150 Irish SMEs

 

3 Counties Energy Agency help SMEs to improve sustainability and reduce energy bills

With extreme weather events in the news almost every day, and the science showing that our behaviour is slowly and relentlessly heating the planet, more people recognise the need to change. Many Irish businesses are examining their options to move towards carbon neutrality.

 

An opportunity has been launched for Irish businesses to avail of a free energy audit as part of an Interreg North-West Europe (NWE) Development Project called CANCap. Businesses that avail of this support will begin to transition to a low carbon economy and contribute towards the Government’s Climate Bill promise to half emission by 2050.

 

Offered by climate experts, 3 Counties Energy Agency (3cea), the project aims to assist SMEs, in specific industries, to improve sustainable measures and reduce energy bills by addressing deficiencies and incorporating renewable energy practices. The Climate Active Neighbourhoods Capitalisation Project (CANCap) free energy audit is available to SME, businesses with fewer than 50 employees in the Southeast region from the following sectors:

 

  • Nursing homes and healthcare providers
  • Food producersfarm foods plants
  • Convenience grocery stores and supermarkets
  • Office blocks and property management companies

 

The audits are offered exclusively by 3 Counties Energy Agency having become Irish members of the global network, the Climate Alliance, based in Germany, a partnership of nine EU countries working together for climate action.

 

Alexandra Hamilton, Senior Energy Engineer with 3cea said

 

“The energy audit will include a walk-through of the building with one of our engineers to see how and where you currently use energy. They may have a camera, meters or other equipment to conduct the survey, but it will not be disruptive, and staff can go about their day as usual. We will make our recommendations for where to save energy across the business. 3cea are registered with SEAI to deliver energy audits across the South East, and we will always highlight any grants or supports available to deliver the projects after the audit is complete.”

 

Following completion of a free energy audit, the business will receive an energy usage report. 3cea will advise on how to reduce energy bills and develop sustainable energy practices that will meet the daily objectives of the business more efficiently. Companies may qualify for further grant assistance should they wish to carry out upgrades such as solar panels, energy-efficient heating or cooling systems, insulation, or upgrade to LED lighting.

 

Under the SEAI’s Better Energy Communities (BEC) grant scheme commercial businesses can avail of up to 30 per cent of the costs of energy upgrades up to €2M maximum grant per company. A free information webinar will be held on 21st September 2021 from 1-2 pm, hosted via Zoom, and presented by 3cea Senior Engineer, Alexandra Hamilton. Those considering energy upgrades will learn more about the savings, how to go through the funding process, the benefits and grant opportunities available to Irish businesses. Register online:https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/information-session-on-energy-grants-supports-for-organisations-tickets-167741863429

 

This is a great opportunity for businesses to reduce energy usage and costs, lower their CO2 emissions and make a very positive impact on climate change. I would encourage any business considering energy upgrades to attend our information evening on September 21st to find out more.” Ms Hamilton Concluded

 

Businesses that are interested in exploring can visit our CAN Cap Homepage and express their interest by filling out the CANCap enquiry form.

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.

3cea Announce Our New H4.0E Ambassador

We are delighted to announce our new H4.0E Ambassador, Marion Jammet from the Irish Green Building Council. Marion has been an integral supporter of H4.0E since its beginning and will now continue in that capacity as an Ambassador. Marion will come on to the project as a Non-Technical Ambassador

Marion Jammet is the Head of Policy and Advocacy at the Irish Green Building Council. In her current role, she is responsible for developing a roadmap to address whole-life carbon in the built environment in Ireland – #BuildingLife campaign. She is also managing several programmes relating to energy renovation, including the H2020 Build Upon 2 project. Marion’s working background is in stakeholder engagement, policy development, and project management, with previous roles in the Dublin Chamber of Commerce, Eurochambres and the European Parliament. Marion holds an MSc in environmental sustainability from University College Dublin and a MA in European Affairs from Sciences-Po (France).

The Irish Green Building Council – IGBC, is a non-profit organisation that was launched in 2011 with organisations and businesses from the entire value chain of the built environment. Its members include universities, professional institutes, NGOs local authorities, contractors, architects, engineers, energy companies, leading national and transnational companies. 3cea is a member of the IGBC. All the members of the IGBC share the common goal of accelerating the transformation of the built environment, related industry, and supply chain to one that is sustainable through leadership, research, education, and providing policy input to national and local government.

Dublin Chamber of Commerce Portraits

“We cannot reach carbon neutrality without addressing the emissions associated with our homes. These include the emissions associated with lighting, heating and cooling, but also those linked to the production of materials and construction of new homes. I am thrilled to support a holistic programme such as Housing 4.0 Energy which through innovation try to address two of the most pressing challenges facing Ireland: the housing crisis and climate emergency.”

Marion Jammet

The H4.0E Ambassador Programme is an integral part of the long-term goals for the project. Ambassadors will help ensure the adoption of the H4.0E approach for future delivery and will engage with the project throughout the project’s lifetime and beyond. Our hope is that Ambassadors will be able to leverage H4.0E policy recommendations and traction amongst the industry and will help lead a change in the industry.

To read more on the Interreg NWE Housing 4.0E Project see our dedicated webpage here.