Tag Archive | "energy"

Minister Alex White announces €20 million of grants for energy efficiency


Minister for Energy Alex White, TD, announced today  €20 million in grant offers for local communities under the 2016 Better Energy Communities scheme.

The scheme, which is administered by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), has supported 260 community energy efficiency projects over the last four years. As a result over 12,000 homes and community buildings have received energy efficiency upgrades, supporting several hundred jobs each year.

Minister White said: “This funding will enable the Better Energy Communities programme to continue to reduce Ireland’s carbon emissions, while improving living standards and quality of life for the people and communities it supports. The building upgrades funded under the programme support local construction jobs, demonstrating that lower-carbon communities also reap positive economic and social benefits. The programme has grown year on year as communities work together to bring about real and lasting change in the energy efficiency of their homes, businesses and community buildings. Putting communities in control of their own energy usage will be among the core themes of the energy white paper, which I will publish next week.”

Better Energy Communities 2016 will open for applications in the New Year and potential applicants are being encouraged to start engaging early with community partners for large or small projects. The 2016 programme will see a particular focus on innovative financing models and SEAI is encouraging applications from communities that haven’t previously availed of the scheme. This will be supported by SEAI through the provision of expert technical guidance and assistance to build up skills and capacity at a local level to allow them to develop into a Sustainable Energy Community.

An example of a community that has benefited from the Better Energy Communities programme already is Camphill Community, a charitable trust working with people with intellectual disabilities.  Camphill Community teamed up with Glas Energy to make 99 buildings across the public and private sectors more energy efficient.  Another community project has seen businesses, not-for-profit organisations and local government unite across Cavan and Monaghan to cut energy waste.  The energy services provider, REIL, led an extensive cooperation among a wide range of sectors including chicken producer Manor Farm, commercial poultry farmers, the Monaghan and Cavan County Councils, 44 homes, a school and crèche to improve the energy performance of buildings.

Commenting on the innovation demonstrated in BEC projects John Randles, Head of Delivery with SEAI said, “Better Energy Communities is one of SEAI’s key programmes which brings benefits to private, public and community organisations whilst they collaborate and demonstrate that energy efficient and renewable technologies work. This is often achieved by innovative partnerships and innovative financing and delivery solutions. The projects being delivered are becoming more ambitious as the programme has grown and this is thanks to the outstanding and combined efforts of so many willing partners who are focused on a common goal for their community.”

Mr Randles concluded, “With almost €20 million available in 2016, SEAI would like to see new ways of delivering the projects that can bring the maximum benefit to local areas.”

Posted in EnergyComments (0)

Carbon content of Irish electricity generation hits record low last year


The carbon content of electricity generation in Ireland fell to a record low last year, half the level it was in 1990, according to figures published by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI).

Renewable electricity helped Ireland avoid 2.6 million tonnes of CO2  emissions in 2014, and is now one of the single biggest contributors to carbon dioxide emissions reductions in Ireland. Without renewables, power generation emissions would have been 23 percent higher.

According to SEAI, renewable electricity generation, consisting of wind, hydro, landfill gas, biomass and biogas, accounted for 22.7 percent of gross electricity consumption and avoided €250 million of fossil fuel imports in 2014.

Commenting on the figures Dr Brian Motherway, Chief Executive of SEAI said:  “These most recent figures for Ireland are extremely positive. This comes ahead of an international climate change agreement at COP21 that will put the world on track to a low-emission, climate resilient and sustainable future. We can see how Ireland is moving to a low-carbon economy with clean and renewable energy increasingly used to provide electricity in our homes and businesses.”

Last year wind generation accounted for 18.2 percent of electricity generated and as such was the second largest source of electricity generation after natural gas.  Without wind, power generation related CO2 emissions would have been 16.2 percent higher.

The carbon intensity of electricity generation fell to a record low in 2014 of 457 grams of CO2 per kilowatt-hour of electrical output, half the level in 1990.

Posted in ElectricityComments (0)

Greenroom Investments to raise €100m to develop European solar farm portfolio


A new Irish renewable energy fund is aiming to raise €100m before Christmas and start building up a portfolio of solar farms across Europe.

Fledgling fund Greenroom Investments received regulatory approval from the Central Bank earlier in the year, making it one of the first investment funds in the country to do so. Greenroom director Michael Bradley is also the chief executive of another Irish solar energy fund, Solar 21.

Solar 21 was established by the Achill Island native in 2010 as an alternative investment vehicle for professionals such as lawyers, doctors and pharmacists. It currently has about €150m worth of assets under management, with several solar farms in Italy.

Mr Bradley says that, due to its regulation by the Central Bank, Greenroom is geared more towards institutional investors as it gives them more security on their investment. It aims to provide a return of 8.5pc over an eight-year period. Although it is more focused on institutions, retail investors can cough up a minimum of €100,000 to get involved.

“We have been managing Solar 21 for five years and that has been doing well – but we wanted to attract even bigger investors,” said Mr Bradley. “We wanted to put the regulation in there for investors, so there is more security and transparency.”

He said that the fund is looking to raise up to €300m in total through three funding rounds, the first of which is due to close in March.

“The company’s first offering has been very well received by institutional and experienced investors alike and it is expected that the first tranche of fundraising will be finalised before Christmas,” he said.

“We would plan to raise about €300m over the next two to three quarters and then we would look at buying assets.”

The fund is looking to invest the estimated €100m equity within 12 months of the raise. He added that the firm would be looking for assets in major European economies such as Italy.

Posted in EnergyComments (0)


Ad

The National Sustainability Summit 2015

Upcoming Events

  • No upcoming events
AEC v1.0.4

Join our Newsletter!


Advertisements