Energy Challenges and Solutions Conference

Last Thursday, 30th November 2017, a Conference on Current and Future Policy Energy Challenges and Solutions organised by Leitrim County Council was hosted at The Dock Arts Centre. The event gave good insights on the ongoing EU-funded SECURE Project – Smart Energy Communities, part of the Northern Periphery and Artic Programme 2014-2020, along with possible solutions needed for the energy transition in Ireland.

The conference kicked off with an introduction and welcome by Mr. Shane Tiernan of Leitrim County Council, followed by speakers such as Leo Strawbridge, Niall Kiernan or the DCCAE Principal Strategic Energy Policy, Martin Finucane. An explanation was given on the challenges that Ireland is facing and will continue to face over the next years as well as the wide range of technology we have at our disposal to fight against the climate change.

The talks included some international partners working on the SECURE project such as Kaija Saramäki (University of Applied Sciences, Finland) and Emma Norton (Nova Scotia, Canada). They shared with us policy energy measures in some regions around the world as examples of potential solutions to implement in the current Irish Energy System.

Illustration 1: Energy secure communities

Our volunteers Francesca (Italy) and Bruno (Spain) attended the event as GEAI delegation.  Paul Mc Nama from IT Sligo also gave a presentation on the NECS Project (Northwest Energy Community Start-up) carried out by IT Sligo and Good Energies Alliance Ireland in six local communities in Co Leitrim, Sligo and Donegal. The project was shown as an example of community engagement through activities such as door-to-door energy surveys, seminars and the World Café which stimulated interesting discussions. During the coffee break the volunteers had the opportunity to chat with different attendees and share views and opinions on the presented project.

Energy Ireland 2016

Thursday 16th and Friday 17th June in Croke Park, Dublin, Lisandra and Aedín attended the 20th annual Energy Ireland conference – Ireland’s energy transition.

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This was Ireland’s major annual energy conference with plenary and workshop sessions and 40 speakers, in two full days, from the European Commission, Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, International Energy Agency, Danish Energy Agency, Imperial College London, University of Cambridge, Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Irish industry leaders and others.

The conference focused on:

  • Ireland’s energy transition
  • Networks and infrastructure
  • Gas markets developments
  • Solar energy in Ireland
  • Energy and climate change
  • Energy citizens
  • Energy storage
  • Electricity market re-design

The conference was a good opportunity for Lisandra and Aedín to exchange experiences and learn with European and Irish energy leaders, network with key players in Ireland, analyse business development opportunities, interact with speakers, get inspiration for current projects and  ideas for new ones.

Our volunteer Lisandra was very amazed with the event:

This two days were very energising and a good opportunity to gather information for my Position Paper about Solar Energy in Ireland, which will be available next month. The quality of the speakers, the materials provided and the effort putted on this conference were very inspiring and shows that Ireland can play a good role in the transition to a low carbon future.

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