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Field-trip to Finland hosted by Bioenergy4Business

Teresa O’Brien, IRBEA’s Communications Manager took time out to take part in trip organised by Motiva from Finland. It was organised under the project Bioenergy4Business which  invited people from all over Europe to view biomass heat and power plants large and small in Finland. Delegates from Finland, Ireland, Greece, Ukraine and Crete were represented. We viewed many biomass plants of varying sizes and functions. An impressive newly built (2015) district heating plant (50 MW) in Tampere with the very latest technology & automation system. It was serviced with woodchip delivery trucks arrive every 3 hours during the day to supply the demand. We met with several heating entrepreneurs, one supplying heat via a woodchip boiler  to a cement factory and local industrial park, with an investment of 4 km of pipes to supply his clients. Another entrepreneur supplied a school and sports hall with his 2 x1 MWH Faust boilers running adjacent to one another with the old school oil boiler used as backup. We are dealing with a completely different energy model in Finland but there are lessons to be learnt – one of the examples that stood out was the ease at which young entrepreneurs can source financing for small heat plants (10MW) with payback period for the investment around about 10 years. We have to consider with these numbers that in Finland wood-chip fired heating is estimated to be one-third cheaper than oil – unfortunately this is not the case in Ireland right now. If you are interested in reading the field notes and seeing photos, view here

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A report from IRBEA’s field trip to Denmark

Donal Magner attended IrBEA’s Bioenergy field trip to Denmark last September, he has now written a interesting report on the tour, it contains a wealth of information on how the renewable industry operates in Denmark and makes suggestions on how we can replicate some of these models in Ireland. View here or download

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Tender for Biomass Fuel and Boiler Maintenance

Currently out for tender is supply of biomass fuel heat and boiler maintenance at two Teagasc sites – Oak Park, Carlow and Johnstown Castle, Wexford. View tender details Contact at Siobhan Culleton – 0599183444.  Deadline for application is 22-10-2016 16:00

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GREBE project launch – details and presentations

The EU-funded project ‘Generating Renewable Energy Business Enterprise’ (GREBE) was launched in Ballina, Co Mayo, at the end of February. IrBEA is an associate partner in the project which is led by Western Development Commission and has partners from the North West Periphery Region including Northern Ireland, Scotland, Norway, Iceland and Finland. GREBE aims to equip SMEs and start-ups with the skills and confidence to overcome sector challenges in their areas and use place-based natural assets for renewable energy to sustainable effect. Presentations from the launch and other project detail are available here

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Press Release – IrBEA Response To Energy White Paper Launch

The Irish Bioenergy Association welcomes the publication of the Energy White Paper by Minister Alex White

As a strategy it is an ambitious plan to achieve important targets for renewable energy.
The weakness in the plan is the ability to convert this ambition into action. For example, a renewable heat incentive was promised since May 2014, and at the earliest this will commence at end of 2016. This long roll-out has resulted in market stagnation.
The report accurately points out that Bioenergy has the potential to create 5000 jobs as well as reducing our carbon emissions, however these benefits can not be fully realised unless the proposed policy measures are promptly implemented.
The transition to sustainable energy sources is a massive undertaking. We are calling on the Minister to follow today’s launch by:

1. Bolstering his department with the necessary resources to undertake this challenge.
2. Fastracking proposed support schemes for renewable heat and electricity.
For further information contact
Michael Hegarty 087-0556630
IrBEA General Manager

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European BioGas Association Press Release on Biogas for Grid

Biomethane is a mature technology that can significantly reduce Europe’s dependency on natural gas” was the main message of the 2nd Conference of the European Biogas Association in the Netherlands. DGs for Energy, Transport and Agriculture confirm that in the next decades there is no way to achieve renewable energy targets without biogas. Read more

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Biogas Manifesto launch: Jobs, cheap heating/electricity and achieving renewables targets

Thousands of jobs, cheap heating/electricity, and achieving renewables targets – politicians hear how to create the conditions to achieve these goals at IrBEA-Cré ‘Biogas Manifesto’ launch Read more

Energy Efficiency Grants

Energy Efficiency Grants

In response to Minister for Energy Alex White’s announcement today 10 March “Major Increase in Grants to Householders for Energy Efficiency”

The Irish BioEnergy Association (IrBEA) notes the Minister has announced increases to energy efficiency grants for householders, effective immediately. IrBEA broadly welcomes this measure, but we do not support the decision to continue to grant aid oil and gas boilers while not grant aiding boilers that run on renewable biomass fuels. Read more

Renewable Heat Incentive

Grandfathering Announcement Urgently Needed For Renewable Heat Incentive

The Government plans to introduce a Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) in 2016 to stimulate change from fossil fuels to renewable sources for commercial and industrial heat production. An unintended consequence of that announcement last October (in draft Bioenergy Plan) is that the market has now ground to a complete halt due to the uncertainty created. Read more