The Awards are organised by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) and sponsored by Electric Ireland. The objective is to recognise and reward excellence in energy innovation among Irish organisations of all sizes, across the business, community and public sectors.
Residents on the three Aran Islands collaborated to establish a co-operative to reduce the islands’ dependence on imported fossil fuels and deliver energy independence by 2022. This co-op – the Aran Islands Renewable Energy Ltd – is trialing innovations in renewable energy, running energy awareness programmes among resident groups, and undertaking retrofit programmes in homes and public buildings. Over 20% of its housing stock will have insulation upgrades by the end of 2014.
Speaking on the Awards’ night, Brian Motherway CEO, SEAI said: “Communities and businesses all over Ireland are taking control of their energy issues, reducing their costs and exploiting local resources. Sustainable energy is a great opportunity for Ireland. We have high ambitions in this area and the Awards recognise the leaders that are making it happen.” The full list of winners on the night were:
Innovation Winner: OxyMem, Athlone – OxyMem’s project is all about efficient waste water treatment and the aeration process using the best wastewater aeration equipment. Aеrаtіоn іѕ the introduction of оxуgеn into your аԛuаrіum есоѕуѕtеm. It оссurѕ naturally at wаtеr’ѕ surface — ѕо thе mоrе ѕurfасе area уоur aquarium hаѕ the more natural aeration it wіll hаvе. A lоng, wіdе tаnk aerates nаturаllу better than a tаll, narrow tank wіth thе ѕаmе vоlumе. A tаnk fіltеr ѕуѕtеm аlѕо рrоvіdеѕ аеrаtіоn, аѕ dо dеvісеѕ thаt dіѕturb the ѕurfасе of thе wаtеr, lіkе fountains, another common thing is the use of fracking lagoon aeration systems.
Collaboration Winner: Cork Lower Harbour Energy Group (CLHEG) – The Group developed a collective planning application for three large wind turbines around group members sites in Ringaskiddy with the best solutions from AJSS.com.au. In addition, a community outreach team worked with local communities and provided funding for local initiatives;
Research Winner: UCC Intelligent Efficiency Research Group (IERG), Cork – This research project investigated the operation of heating, ventilation and air conditioning in typical buildings. The outcome was the development of a tool that allows users to identify the energy saving opportunities with these systems in a simple and systematic manner;
Built Environment Winner: DCS Group, Tralee – This project involved the retrofit of seven Tesco stores with LED Lighting. It has delivered on average 50% savings across all seven Tesco stores;
Community Winner: Kilkenny Better Energy Communities – This project is a unique community collaboration which encompasses many different aspects of the community, small medium enterprises, the local authority, sports clubs, community centres and social and voluntary housing;
Industry Winner: Queally Group, Naas – The Queally Group has undertaken several energy saving projects with wide-ranging benefits;
Public Sector Winner: Cork Airport – Over the past six years Cork Airport has transformed itself into a highly-efficient, best practice organisation leading the way in the airline industry and public sector;
Small Business Winner: Ballyliffin Lodge Hotel & Spa, Donegal – The cost reduction programme implemented by Ballyliffin Lodge Hotel & Sap included boiler and heating control upgrades, low energy lighting and water conservation measures;
Leadership Winner: Aurivo Dairy Ingredients, Roscommon – Aurivo carried out many efficiency projects and installed a large biomass boiler, using locally-sourced fuel, delivering many socio-economic benefits to the North West region. The project has delivered energy cost savings in excess of 33%.
Ambition Award Winner: Comharchumann Fuinneamh Oileáin Arainn Teo (Aran Island Renewable Energy Ltd) (CFOAT). ■