The standard of applications for the 2019 SEAI Sustainable Energy Awards was exceptionally high. View the successful shortlisted projects for 2019.
See all of the finalists in each category below.
Large Business - Exemplary Energy Management
Tipperary Cooperative Creamery
Tipperary Cooperative Creamery has been operating in one of Europe’s most traditional milk production areas since 1908 and has the capacity to process one million litres of milk per day. The milk is processed into: cheese, butter, milk powders and other dairy products and each year they manufacture 35,000 tonnes of these products. The farmers/shareholder owned cooperative understand the impact that their business has on the environment and has introduced an energy efficient management system to reduce their carbon footprint.
The Tipperary creamery consistently engages with the community to create an enhanced awareness at farm and school level, highlighting the importance of improved energy management from a business and social perspective. The energy management system has resulted in energy saving of over 10% in the first year of the program.
Abbott Ireland create innovative products in diagnostics, medical devises, nutrition and branded generic pharmaceuticals advancing health and wellness in Ireland. Home to nearly 3,000 employees across 9 sites, Abbott Ireland strives to make its work environment a more sustainable and responsible place to work. It is committed to safeguarding a healthy environment for everyone by reducing the environmental impact of the business. The collaborative effort of the Abbott Ireland team has been central to delivering energy savings of 9%.
German supermarket chain, Aldi, has been operating in Ireland since 1999 and now has 138 stores nationwide, employing over 3,500 people. Aldi is committed to pursuing sustainable business practices and through The Aldi Carbon Reduction Project they have achieved their 2019 goal of carbon neutrality. The success follows Aldi’s introduction of numerous initiatives, including the implementation of an ISO50001 certified energy management system, the purchase of 100% green electricity, and an investment in environmentally-friendly refrigeration systems. For the low-cost supermarket chain, the 2% saving to date is only the start of the journey
SME - Exemplary Energy Management
Flahavan's, Ireland’s oldest family-owned business has been milling oats for over 230 years, across seven generations at the family mill in Co. Waterford. The oats for the company’s Progress Oatlets are sourced from local farmers within a 60-mile radius of the mill in Kilmacthomas. Flahavan’s has four methods of energy generation with biomass from by-product, wind, solar and hydro working in a complimentary manner. Flahavan's has reduced the need for almost half a million litres of diesel per year as steam is produced from the burning of the oat husks. The company also has its own on-site wind and water turbines which generate electricity for the facility's production. Flahavan’s has always prioritised sustainability and its organic division accounts for over 25 per cent of its overall business.
Riordan’s SuperValu Fermoy
Riordan’s SuperValu Fermoy is a third-generation family run supermarket which is leading the way in energy efficiency and generation. Following the completion of a series of energy upgrades, Riordan’s reduced its carbon footprint by over 40%. Their pragmatic approach included staff training, fitting state-of-the-art LED lights, in addition to energy saving doors to their refrigeration units and a complete refurb of their hot water system contribute to the success of their sustainability efforts.
Bocan Community Creche
Bocan Community Creche is small yet environmentally conscious childcare facility, which aims to reduce its carbon footprint through a series of cost effective and ‘green’ choices. The creche has already installed geothermal heat pumps, eliminating the need for oil and installed electric solar panels which generate electricity, reducing the demand on our national grid. This continues to be one of the factors in helping to keep the creche fees at a low and sustainable rate for parents. The creche has also been awarded with three green flags through the Green Schools programme. Further eco-adjustments will be made as they advance on their sustainability journey.
National University of Ireland, Galway
National University of Ireland, Galway is home to 18,000 students and is certified ISO 50001, an international energy management standard that recognises the University’s efforts to use energy more efficiently and to continuously improve energy performance. NUI Galway is one of the first Universities to exceed the 33% 2020 target and are currently at 36% (2018). President Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh commits annually to the Energy Performance Objectives by signing the Energy Policy, committing the university to meeting targets set out in the energy plan.
TG4 is Ireland’s only Irish language television station which launched in 1996. TG4’s philosophy is to do more with less – this ideology has been actioned through their efficient use of energy and ‘green’ project planning. Energy is effectively managed on a day to day basis using an Energy Management System. TG4’s progressive approach has been to integrate energy management with energy efficiency projects and renewable energy technologies to ensure its energy impact on the environment is minimal.
Citation: TG4 has achieved significant energy savings in the past 10 years through a combination of good energy management practices, energy efficiency projects and renewable energy technologies.
Dublin City University
Dublin City University (DCU), a leading Dublin University has rapidly expanded from two to five campuses and has been elevated to ‘Green Flag’ University status. The University is committed to responsible energy management, aiming to efficiently manage and reduce energy usage whilst providing a first-class learning and research environment. The management of energy at DCU has shown real results, with the university exceeding the 33% energy target, reaching 43%.
Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown County Council
Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown County Council (DLR) has consistently shown leadership by being a national test-bed for a wide range of energy innovations, from internal systems including a monthly monitoring energy software, Energy Elephant to manage their ISO 50001, to public amenities and housing construction techniques. Leading the way in dual usage municipal infrastructure, dlr installed the first public lighting poles to be used for charging Electric Vehicles and the world's first solar powered phone and electric bike charging bench, the Monna, promoting sustainable transport. Exemplar housing whether new build or refurbishment built to nZEB and Passive House standards has led to dlr winning the RIAI Sustainability Award for the last 3 years.
Sustainable Energy Community
Dingle Sustainable Energy Community
Dingle Sustainable Energy Community (DSEC) was established as part of Mol Teic (CLG), a Community Enterprise Company that operates the Dingle Creativity and Innovation hub, to facilitate the process of transitioning the Dingle Peninsula to a low carbon community. It forms part of Dingle 2030, a broader initiative driving sustainability projects in the areas of energy, transport, agriculture, tourism and the marine. The Energy Masterplan is nearing completion and a register of opportunities has been identified that will form the next steps on the path towards an energy demand reduction of 40%, with renewables meeting 30% of the remaining demand by 2030. Funding has been secured from Gas Networks Ireland and Údarás na Gaeltachta for a feasibility study for anaerobic digestion on the Peninsula which is a proven technology that provides a chance to produce clean energy, clean up farming and diversify rural incomes.
Kilanerin-Ballyfad Community Development Association (KBCDA) – Sustainable Energy Community (SEC)
Kilanerin-Ballyfad Community Development Association (KBCDA) – Sustainable Energy Community (SEC) project aims to identify energy reduction opportunities within the community, across residential and non-residential sectors, specifically in relation to; electricity, heating, transport, as well as looking at measures for the community’s potential to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels. KBCDA-SEC understand the urgency on the matter of sustainability in communities and know that each step made has a positive impact and that they are leading by example.
Citation: KBCDA-SEC is making a difference in the lives of all who live in the community. The Sustainability Fair and the Seminar Series on sustainability and energy is helping to raise awareness across the community.
Sustainable Tipp is the planned energy conversion of Tipperary’s housing, commercial, public and community buildings. It is an opportunity for communities, farmers, homeowners and business owners to save energy, money and to ‘go green’.
Tipperary’s ‘Sustainable Energy Community’ consists of a number of organisations including Tipperary County Council, Limerick Institute of Technology (Thurles), Teagasc, North and South Tipperary Leader Development companies, the Local Enterprise Office and the Public Participation Network. Its ambition is to achieve EU 2020 targets at a county level and go beyond that to achieve 40% CO2 reduction by 2030. Tipperary County Council has already surpassed its 2020 targets and hence is reaching outwards under ‘Sustainable Tipp’.
Mulranny GreenPlan Group
Mulranny GreenPlan Group is a small but effective community group made up of eight volunteers and supported by additional local groups through Mulranny Community Futures. The Green Plan is built around seven themes that have a positive impact on climate change: Water, Energy, Biodiversity, Waste, Green Procurement, Carbon Production and Society.
Mulranny GreenPlan group wants to tackle climate change by reducing the carbon footprint in the rural community and encourage energy reduction measures. The green volunteers operate by picking one flagship building at a time, to optimise and transform into a green role model.
Mulranny GreenPlan vision is that ‘Mulranny's unique environment will be preserved and enhanced for future generations and that we will be a carbon neutral, eco-friendly and inspirational community'.
Trinity College Dublin Business School
Trinity College Dublin Business School is a state-of-the-art development located in the historic campus in the heart of Dublin's city centre. The building has been designed to ensure it will operate on low energy and low maintenance principles throughout its lifespan. Energy reduction has been achieved through a combination of passive design features (natural ventilation and daylight) in conjunction with low-energy systems (displacement ventilation to auditorium etc.), supplemented by renewable technologies (Photovoltaic array), in order to achieve Near Zero Energy Building (NZEB) performance. The building was also designed to incorporate a number of Green Walls to benefit from the environmental and psychological benefits generated by the micro-climates they create.
Dublin City Council - St Bricin's Park, Block 2
Dublin City Council - St Bricin's Park, Block 2, is a Senior Citizen's apartment block situated in Arbour Hill, Dublin. It is one of the three blocks that complete this Social Housing scheme. These apartment blocks are typical two-storey bedsit blocks built in the 1960s. The existing bedsits were amalgamated into eleven apartments and a deep retrofit was carried out. The project achieved EnerPHit standard of a minimum 80% reduction in energy use and minimum 80% reduction of CO2 emissions. Sustainable energy features include insulation to the walls, ground floor and attics, triple glazed windows and doors, and the provision of heating, hot water, and heat recovery ventilation via an exhaust air to water heat pump.
Astellas Ireland (AICL) Kerry Plant
Astellas Ireland (AICL) Kerry Plant is a pharmaceutical company, manufacturing a range of treatments, including the immunosuppressant Prograf® which is supplied to 114 countries globally from Killorglin. The ARK (Astellas Renewal Kerry) building project included Energy Efficient Design principles and International design standard LEED. The project focused on building fabric with low U-values for windows, floors and walls between 30-50% below the regulation where feasible. The building includes innovative energy technologies and also includes PV panels on the roof and a solar thermal array. A full independent integrated energy model of the building was completed, showing energy cost savings of over 38% per annum and 950 tonnes of CO2.
Ashleigh Environmental have developed an advanced hydrolysis technology for the global bioenergy market. Biowave™ is a disruptive microwave pre-treatment system to valorise organic by-products within an anaerobic digestion system. The microwave system has proven to improve biogas yields by over 20% and reduces process reaction time. Microwaves offer significant energy transfer efficiency compared to conventional pre-treatment technologies and the modularity of the system lends itself to be a bolt-on for an existing biogas plant or in the construction of new plants. The Biowave™ system has been demonstrated at an industrial pilot scale for the Agri biogas market and the company are now developing exciting applications across the broader bioenergy market including industrial and municipal waste sectors. So far, successful applications of microwave technology have been primarily in the synthesis of high-value compounds like pharmaceuticals and the sterilization of hazards, but now offer a highly compelling value proposition in the production of renewable energy from organic waste streams.
The Dŵr Uisce project, a cross-border research collaboration between Trinity College Dublin and Bangor University, aims to improve the efficiency of water distribution by developing new low carbon energy-saving technology, including micro-hydropower turbines.
The new low-cost micro-hydropower technology comprises the development of a pump-as-turbine in-pipe hydropower solution. A pump-as-turbine design software tool was developed on the basis of a number of mathematical formulations and using a large database of pump performance information. The pump was adapted to run in reverse to produce rather than consume energy.
The technology was validated in a full-scale laboratory test and achieves power production at 5-15 times less cost than conventional devices. The demonstration plant was installed in February 2019 and the Blackstairs GWS is donating the cost savings to the water charity Wells for Life.
NovoGrid has developed, proven and patented GridViz, a software platform that provides real-time grid visibility of power flows at the grid edge. This enables utilities & generators to gain real time visibility and controllability of their assets much more efficiently. GridViz uses non-iterative, direct calculations performed locally at remote network locations in real-time, which can then be used to action local controls or be fed back to a control centre for centralised control/management functions. The platform will be of interest to wind farm owners or electricity network operators around the world and their goal is to break into the European and North American markets.
Citation: The project is delivering real value by way of increased renewable energy into the grid with a high potential for wider deployment globally. It is an excellent example of real and demonstrated innovation arising from excellent research in an Irish university.
Energy Team/Manager of the Year
Hotel Doolin is a 4* boutique hotel located in the Burren & Cliffs of Moher Geopark. Aine Martin has led the Green Team for the last three years, working to reduce the hotel's carbon footprint. The team set targets, meet monthly and put different initiatives and actions in place to achieve the goals. Activities included changing the heating system from oil to an air-to-water heating system resulting in a 68% reduction in oil in the last 2 years. Other activities included upgrading to LED lighting, investing in building fabric upgrades, creating energy charts, changing electricity supply to renewable electricity, servicing equipment annually, training staff, installing an electric car charger and installing heating and cooling upgrades.
National University of Ireland Galway
National University of Ireland Galway is on a journey to establish the campus as one of the greenest Universities in the world. As part of its sustainability strategy, it has created a Green Campus Charter, encouraging and providing tools to students and staff on how to reduce energy use on site and at home. The Galway team also gives ‘green’ recommendations on new technology being used on campus, to ensure alignment with their sustainability goals. The team strive to live, learn and lead by example, and are charting all three of these in daily actions and aim to achieve an ambitious 40% improvement in energy efficiency by 2020.
Musgrave, which owns Super Valu and Centra, is Ireland's largest grocery distributor and is dedicated to building a more sustainable future in work. The Musgrave Sustainability Team, led by Daniel Murphy has been leading by example, supporting their SuperValu and Centra retailers in delivering energy and cost savings. Energy consumption in Musgrave owned facilities has been reduced by up to 25% and similar targets are being driven for the independent retailers. The Musgrave retailers operate at the heart of local communities and with the support of the Musgrave Sustainability Team, take an active role in supporting energy initiatives in local clubs and charities.
2019 Gala Awards Event
All finalists have been invited to a business lunch and Awards ceremony taking place on October 16th in the Radisson Gloden Lane, Dublin. There the winners will be announced on the day and presented with their awards.