Webinar 37: Sustainable Aviation Fuel – The potential and opportunity for bioenergy

A recording of this webinar can be found HERE.

Topic Overview

The work of SFS Ireland is focused on the development of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) markets in Ireland and worldwide. The organisation’s objective is to contribute to the reduction of the aviation sector’s CO2 footprint by bringing together the aviation industry, all stakeholders of the SAF supply chain, and academia to drive the production and implementation. SFS Ireland has recently been working on a feasibility study, together with SkyNRG, and supported by Avolon, Boeing and Orix Aviation. More details can be found here. SAF manufacturing technology is considered cutting edge and initial analysis indicates that a SAF project would play a leading role in integrating the energy industry, with a possible future circular bioeconomy for Ireland. Listen to this webinar and find out more about Sustainable Aviation Fuel and the potential opportunities for Irish bioenergy.

Speaker
Agnes Thornton
Agnes Thornton has been working as an airline pilot for the last 10 years. During the reduced rosters in light of the Covid pandemic, Agnes completed an MSc in Aviation Leadership at DCU Business School, with her research focusing on the opportunities and barriers to SAF implementation by the airline industry. In 2020, she partnered with Darren Carty to found SFS Ireland.

Webinar MC – Seán Finan, IBEA CEO

Biomethane Request for Information issued by GNI

Gas Networks Ireland has launched a request for information (RFI) process to support the identification of new and feasible biomethane production projects.

Responses will be used to assess the future infrastructure requirements for biomethane integration into the gas network and facilitate the most efficient delivery of biomethane to our customers and the most economic connections to the gas network for producers.

As part of the process, Gas Networks Ireland is holding an information event with other stakeholders and biomethane producers on 29th November 2022, at the Clayton Hotel, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. If you wish to attend, please register here.

Biomethane producers that intend to supply renewable gas into the Irish gas network are invited to respond by the closing date of Monday, December 19th.

Responses may be submitted online or downloaded and emailed to biomethaneRFI@gasnetworks.ie. Alternatively, they can be posted to the address below:

Gas Networks Ireland,
Gasworks Road,
Cork,
T12 RX96.

Please mark all email and postal correspondence with the title ‘Biomethane RFI’.

To find out more about the RFI process and submit your response, please visit www.gasnetworks.ie/RFI.

PRESS RELEASE: First Irish trial of a new fuel for Heritage Railways a huge success – IrBEA

For immediate release – 14/10/2022
First Irish trial of a new fuel for Heritage Railways a huge success – IrBEA

Heritage is big business because the tourism industry is big business. Heritage sites have traditionally burned coal, from open fire grates in historic houses to steam locomotives, traction engines and stationary engines. So how can you de-carbonise this important part of the tourism industry and yet keep everything moving along? Recently the search has been on for a coal substitute that gives similar characteristics to coal but which does not add to the burden of carbon in the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels.  Fortunately, and for historic reasons (not least the desire to move away from generating electricity from burning peat) Ireland is leading the way in this area.

On Saturday 24th September 2022, Ireland saw the first passenger train to be hauled by a steam locomotive using a 100% renewable biomass-based coal substitute. This was on the Stradbally Woodland Railway, a short narrow-gauge line with steep gradients. Being in woodland, the old saying ‘from small acorns do great oaks grow’ could be perfectly appropriate for this significant trial. The fuel used was a stove-ready commercial product called ‘Harvest Flame’ that is made via the process of torrefaction from biomass – in this case olive stones, a residue from the food industry. As that Saturday proved, this material is also suitable for small locomotives and traction engine boilers. So, Ireland’s original volunteer run heritage line has now also pioneered a first step towards carbon neutral steam heritage.

Nicola Glynn, secretary of the Irish Steam Preservation Society (ISPS) said: “We were excited to try this new form of fuel. Our railway and traction engine rally is in a beautiful part of Ireland, and doing our bit to help decarbonise the economy is important to us. Plus, our crews enjoyed not ending the day covered with coal dust, as this is a remarkably clean fuel.”

The ‘Continuity Biocoal’ project is a collaboration between the Irish Steam Preservation Society CLG, Arigna Fuels of Roscommon, The Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) and their partners in Wales, the Severn Wye Energy Agency (SWEA), in the Interreg NWE funded THREE C Project. The initiative highlights the close working relationship between Ireland and Wales (which has many narrow-gauge steam railways of its own) made possible by participation in a series of European transnational projects, that have focussed on finding climate-friendly uses for low value, residual biomass over the last decade.

Peter Layden, Director of Arigna Fuels said:Arigna Fuels are delighted to support the heritage steam industry, replacing the original fossil coal with Harvest Flame, our new biomass-sourced 100% renewable and sustainable fuel.  Not only will this fuel help to drastically reduce the carbon footprint of the heritage sector, but it will also allow people to continue to enjoy first-hand the magnificent and historic engineering, a legacy of a different era.”

Stephen McCormack of IrBEA said:IrBEA and its members continue to develop and promote sustainable forms of bioenergy. IrBEA is excited to be supporting this novel and innovative application of a fully sustainable biofuel in such an iconic use. The small steam engines of Ireland have played a very significant role in the development of energy production, industry and agriculture in our Island and it is important to keep this heritage alive whilst showing that a move to a bioenergy based, non-fossil fuel future is achievable. A new product for an old process, with much potential.”

The Continuity Biocoal project holds out the hope that much of our industrial heritage can avoid retirement to glass cases in a museum and continue to inform, educate, and give pleasure to future generations without damaging our environment further. The UK’s National Railway Museum is also closely following the lead taken by Ireland in this field. Heritage railways and other historic sites have so far helped the public to understand how our communities, culture and society were shaped by the fossil-fuel age; now they can tell the next chapter by showing how we can transition to a Net-Zero-Carbon future, by working together and working smarter. Saving our only home planet need not mean having to give up everything we enjoy.


Photo of the Heritage Railway locomotive at Stradbally, Co.Laois  which is  the 1st passenger heritage train powered by a 100% renewable biomass coal product. Photo Credit R. Gwynne

Group Photo: Pictured at the Heritage Railway in Stradbally, Co.Laois, at the trial of the new biocoal, are L-R, Bob Gwynne – National Railway Museum UK, Colin Keyse – Severn Wye, Nigel Glynn – Irish Steam Preservation Society, Robert Johnson – Arigna Fuels, Stephen McCormack – Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA), Sean Cain – Irish Steam Preservation Society. Photo Credit R. Gwynne

ENDS

********************************

Notes to editors

About Heritage Railways
The Irish Steam Preservation Society CLG, operate the Stradbally woodland railway as well as Ireland’s largest traction engine rally. There are currently six operational heritage railways in Ireland, with two others currently non operational and a further three planned. In the UK, 156 Heritage Railways and museums attract 13 million visitors a year and contribute £600 million to the UK economy. They also employ around 4000 people. Heritage steam machines burn approximately 35,000T of fossil coal per year in the UK all of which will very soon have to be imported.

The Irish Steam Preservation Society
The Irish Steam Preservation Society was formed by a group of Steam enthusiasts who set out to preserve for the good of the country, a part of national agricultural heritage, the Steam Traction engine and its many forms after a meeting of members at Harold Condell’s farm in Co. Laois in 1964. From a small gathering of engines held at the Market House in Stradbally on St Stephen’s day 1965, the society was formed and the National Steam Rally held on August Bank Holiday was established, which remains a highlight in the national and international Steam calendar and is the longest running Steam Rally in the country.  2019 saw the most steam engines ever gathered on the Island of Ireland for the 50th anniversary rally. In 1967 a short narrow gauge Steam Railway was added using a locomotive kindly donated by the Guinness Brewery with a passenger carriage. In 1969, tracks were re-laid to run the 3 ft gauge preserved Bórd na Móna locomotive. So we can proudly claim to be the only Traction Engine Rally in Ireland to have its own Steam Railway. The Stradbally Woodland Railway is the first volunteer-run heritage railway in Ireland. It runs every Bank Holiday weekend and selected other running days during the year. In June 1968 the “Steam Museum” was opened in Stradbally by P.J Lalor, parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Transport and Power. It has grown from its humble beginnings to the fine building it is today housing many fine exhibits and engines for the public to see. It is open by arrangement which can be made with the society’s secretary. Contact details of the Company Secretary: – Nicola Glynn 086 6053414

About the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA)
Founded in 1999, as a membership organisation, IrBEA’s role is to promote the bioenergy industry and to develop this important sector on the island of Ireland. The association covers the sectors of biomass, biogas, biofuels, biochar, wood fuels and energy crops. IrBEA’s diverse membership includes farmers and foresters, fuel suppliers, energy development companies, equipment manufacturers and suppliers, engineers, financiers and tax advisers, legal firms, consultants, planners, research organisations, local authorities, education and advisory bodies – anyone with an interest in the bioenergy industry.

Contact: Stephen McCormack IrBEA Project Executive Tel: 00353 (0)874403242   Email: stephenmccormack@irbea.org  Visit: www.irbea.org

About Arigna Fuels
Arigna Fuels, the manufacturers of “Harvest Flame” are on their own journey to decarbonize their products and manufacturing processes. A small family-owned business, having mined coal in Arigna for 100 years, they moved all their production to smokeless (albeit fossil-based) fuel in 1990. This contributed significantly to the air quality improvements in Dublin, following the city being designated a Smokeless Zone.    Their old mine sites are now converted to windfarms, generating more clean power than the original coal ever did. The company is now on the path to only producing 100% biomass products and is currently increasing its capacity to replace existing coal-based products with Harvest Flame and other biochar-based products.  Contact: Peter Layden, Director, Arigna Fuels +353 (0) 71 964 6002.

About the Severn Wye Energy Agency
Severn Wye is a sustainability charity working across Wales and its English border counties. Severn Wye Energy Agency works towards a world where natural resources are used sustainably, communities are resilient against inequality and climate change does not threaten our future. Severn Wye’s Sustainable Technologies team is at the forefront of finding new ways of tackling energy efficiency and the rapid transition to a Net-Zero-Carbon economy in a way that benefits everyone in our society. This includes finding sustainable, renewable fuel sources that use existing carbon systems rather than relying on fossil fuels – so that what this trial does for heritage rail might also lead to sustainable fuels to meet many other challenges. Contact: James Clarke, Director of Communications  +44 (0) 1452 835076 jamesc@severnwye.org.uk

Continuity Biocoal is one of a suite of projects funded under the NWE Interreg 5B programme – in this case the THREE C project (Creating the Circular Carbon Economy) involving 13 partner organisations from seven countries. Drawing on 15 years of research, development and collaboration between universities, the private sector and community organisations, the THREE-C project is helping to solve problems and tackle climate change by sharing experience, evidence and contacts across a wide range of fields.
Technical Terms
‘Pyrolysis’ is the thermal conversion of an organic substance by heating in the absence of Oxygen. This process will drive off various chemical components in the form of oils and gasses of the substance to be separated, collected and reused and will progressively alter the physical properties of the remaining materials.
‘Torrefaction’ is a term that describes the stage in the process of pyrolysis where some of the unwanted components are driven off, the molecular structure is altered but some of the hydrocarbons and organic carbon remain.
‘Biocoal’ is a term used to describe a solid, coal-like substance derived from green or woody biomass – the tissue of currently or recently living things. As such it utilises Carbon which is ‘currently in circulation’ in the biosphere and which is replaced in the short term by the growth of other plants and vegetation. It does not use ‘Fossil Coal’ which releases stored Carbon from a source kept locked in the earth and out of the current carbon cycle. Depending on how the biomass is grown and harvested, It can potentially therefore be described as ‘Carbon Neutral’.
‘Biochar’ is a term used to describe the solid residue of Organic Carbon which is left if the pyrolysis process is continued beyond the Torrefaction stage. This material, which is similar to charcoal, has many potential uses in Industry, Construction and Agriculture and presents the possibility of drawing down Carbon Dioxide from the Atmosphere and locking it away out of the current carbon cycle. This is a ‘Green House Gas drawdown’ technique.
‘Biofuel’ is a term used to describe fuels manufactured to replace fossil fuels in existing infrastructure, such as power generation and transport. Many concerns have been expressed about the destruction of natural habitat and biodiversity caused by a mass switch to biofuels, and the displacement of land used for food growing.  The Continuity Biocoal project uses the olive stone residue from a food processing plant, serving a traditional agricultural sector, so does not displace food production or damage sensitive habitats.

PRESS RELEASE: IrBEA moves bioenergy from the side-lines to centre stage at their annual conference today.

For Immediate Release:

11/10/2022

Large numbers attend the 21st Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) National Bioenergy Conference at the Lyrath Hotel in Kilkenny today. Delegates discuss the contribution bioenergy can make to reduce business cost, carbon and supply risks.

Dr. John Reilly, Head of Renewable Energy at Bord na Móna said “Solid biomass and biomethane have a very strong role to play to fully decarbonise Ireland’s electricity sector as well as our heating and transport industries. Bord na Móna is making very significant investment at the Edenderry complex to make it bioenergy ready and to capitalise on this opportunity.”

Leo Varadkar, An Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment noted in his online address that: “Bioenergy requires policy coherence with the relevant decision makers and to be recognised for its strong potential in Ireland.”

IrBEA President and CEO of the South Eastern Energy Agency, Paddy Phelan said: “There is a great buzz at today conference. The bioenergy resource needs to be converted into real tangible renewable energy opportunities. This requires the immediate and urgent introduction of policy, supports and incentives.”

IrBEA would also like to thank our conference headline sponsors Bord na Móna and associate sponsors South East Energy Agency, Gas Networks Ireland, Ethanol Europe, and Glas Energy. All these businesses exhibited today and contributed to the panel discussions.

Seán Finan, IrBEA CEO speaking at the conference said: “Bioenergy is uniquely placed in providing a solution to the current challenges which Ireland faces in terms of energy security and indigenous supply. At this year’s conference, the message is very clear on the need to accelerate policy with encourages the uptake of bioenergy technology deployment in Ireland and the current & future contribution of bioenergy in Ireland’s renewable energy mix.”

Finan concluded: “All those involved in this year’s conference are active in the promotion and deployment of solid, liquid or gaseous bioenergy. The time for action in terms of bioenergy is now. The resources are available, the supply chain is ready and energy users want bioenergy to reduce cost, carbon and supply risks.”

ENDS.

For Further Information Contact: Seán Finan IrBEA CEO on 087 4146480

Notes to Editors:

 

About the 21st National Bioenergy Conference

Full details of the conference including sponsors, exhibitors, agenda and speakers is available at  www.nationalbioenergyconference.ie

 

Photo Captions: Pic 1 IrBEA Conference

Pictured at the 21st IrBEA National Bioenergy Conference are l to r: Paddy Phelan IrBEA President and CEO of South Eastern Energy Agency, Seán Finan CEO Irish Bioenergy Association and Dr John Reilly Head of Renewable Energy at Bord na Móna

Photo Captions: Pic 2 IrBEA Conference

Pictured at the 21st IrBEA National Bioenergy Conference are l to r: Paddy Phelan IrBEA President and CEO of South Eastern Energy Agency, Dr John Reilly Head of Renewable Energy at Bord na Móna  and Seán Finan CEO Irish Bioenergy Association

Photo Captions: Pic 3 IrBEA Conference

Pictured at the 21st IrBEA National Bioenergy Conference are l to r: Paddy Phelan IrBEA President and CEO of South Eastern Energy Agency, Dr John Reilly Head of Renewable Energy at Bord na Móna  and Seán Finan CEO Irish Bioenergy Association

 

 

What is Bioenergy?

Bioenergy can be defined as any form of energy that is derived from living organisms, either

plant or animal. It encompasses a wide range of different types and origins. It can take the form of solid, liquid or gaseous fuel and can be used to provide renewable energy across a variety of sectors including heating, electricity generation and transport sectors.

 

What are the different forms of Bioenergy?

  • Solid biofuels and wood fuels: Wood pellet, woodchip, energy crops, firewood and biomass briquettes
  • Gaseous Biofuels: Biogas and Biomethane
  • Liquid Biofuels: Bioethanol, Biodiesel, Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil and Bio-oil

 

About the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA)

IrBEA was founded in 1999. Its role is to promote the bioenergy industry and to develop this important sector on the island of Ireland. The diverse membership includes farmers and foresters, fuel suppliers, energy development companies, equipment manufacturers and suppliers, engineers, financiers and tax advisers, legal firms, consultants, planners, research organisations, local authorities, education, and advisory bodies – anyone with an interest in the bioenergy industry. IrBEA is recognised by Government and agencies as the voice of the bioenergy industry. The association’s main objectives are to influence policy makers to promote the development of bioenergy, and to promote the interests of members. Improving public awareness, networking, and information sharing, and liaising with similar interest groups are other key areas of work in promoting bioenergy as an environmentally, economically, and socially sustainable energy. Further information on the association is available at www.irbea.org

 

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: Reducing energy costs, carbon, and supply risks – sustainable bioenergy for business IrBEA announces details of upcoming national bioenergy conference

For Immediate Release:
07/10/2022

IrBEA’s 21st national bioenergy conference will take place on Tuesday 11th October at the Lyrath Hotel in Kilkenny. Bioenergy is uniquely placed in providing a solution to the current challenges which Ireland faces in terms of energy security and indigenous supply. IrBEA looks forward to welcoming a wide and diverse range of stakeholders to this flagship event. At this year’s conference, the focus will be on the need to accelerate the uptake of bioenergy technology deployment in Ireland and the current & future contribution of bioenergy in Ireland’s renewable energy mix.

Seán Finan, Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) CEO said: “We need all renewable technologies and renewable fuels to be deployed as part of a broad renewable energy policy in Ireland. The conference title ‘Sustainable bioenergy for business: reducing costs, carbon and supply risks’ is very appropriate in the current environment of high energy prices, a climate crisis and worries about energy security. IrBEA members have the technologies and fuelling solutions which will address all those concerns. These solutions will be discussed in detail at the conference.”

In line with the development of its renewable energy portfolio, Bord na Móna is headline sponsor for the  21st national bioenergy conference.

Finan continued: “We are very pleased that Bord na Móna is headline sponsor for this conference given its transition to renewable energy technologies. The company’s mission is to take a leadership position in developing and delivering clean, renewable energy, along with carbon storage and resource recovery solutions.”

Bord na Móna has plans to deploy a wide range of renewable energy generation. Specifically  in bioenergy this includes 100% biomass use at Edenderry Power limited and the development of biomethane production capacity.

Tom Egan Operations Manager at Bord na Móna said: “Bord na Móna are delighted to sponsor IrBEA’s national bioenergy conference. Edenderry Power Plant shows the potential of bioenergy and how it can help Ireland transition from fossil fuels to low carbon, renewable energy generation. Approximately 80% of Edenderry’s biomass is supplied by Irish producers. The biomass contribution at Edenderry makes it the biggest supplier of ‘on-demand’ renewable energy on the Island of Ireland. Ireland aims to have an 80% renewable electricity supply by 2030. By 2024, Bord na Mona’s Edenderry Power Plant will be generating 100% renewable energy, helping Ireland meet this vital climate action target.”

In additions to the headline sponsorship of Bord na Móna, IrBEA is happy to welcome the associate sponsorship of Gas Networks Ireland, Southeast Energy Agency, Ethanol Europe and GLAS Energy for this year’s conference.

Finan concluded:  “All those involved in this year’s conference are active in the promotion and deployment of solid, liquid, or gaseous bioenergy. We look forward to welcoming delegates to Kilkenny next week and for intensive engagement on many aspects associated with our industry including its potential and opportunity as well as hearing from current users of bioenergy in Irish business which is reducing cost, carbon, and supply risks.”

ENDS.
For Further Information Contact: Seán Finan IrBEA CEO on 087 4146480

on the association is available at www.irbea.org

Jump-start bioenergy in Budget 2023 to buttress energy security – IrBEA

For Immediate Release:

23/09/2022

Jump-start bioenergy in Budget 2023 to buttress energy security – IrBEA

Globally, over two thirds of renewable energy comes from bioenergy. This is over ten times the energy generated from both wind and solar. Budget 2023 is Government’s opportunity to recognise Irish bioenergy’s potential to buttress energy security and for it to announce dedicated incentives to jump-start the Irish bioenergy industry. Bioenergy sources and technology are proven globally, they are available here and now, and it’s high time for action.

Seán Finan, Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) CEO said: “We desperately need all renewable technologies and fuels. European and global bioenergy deployment is driven by dedicated policy supports, incentives and measures. The bioenergy industry in Ireland is still waiting for its full potential to be realised by the Government. Favourable Irish policy measures in recent years for wind and solar have helped develop those sectors. This budget presents the Government with an opportunity to announce measures which support the mobilisation of bioenergy. Bioenergy can significantly contribute to energy security and reduce Ireland’s dependence on volatile and record high-priced fossil fuels. The contribution of Irish-sourced and produced bioenergy, for energy security that’s sustainable can no longer be ignored.

‘Anaerobic digestion’ was almost a mantra in media interviews and on talk-shows for a few heady weeks of summer. It’s time now for the Government to act on that. Bioenergy covers a broad range of sustainable, renewable, indigenous energy alternatives available here on our doorstep. A mainstream Irish biogas/biomethane industry (using anaerobic digestion technology) mobilised on a phased basis would reduce our dependence on fossil gas. The REPowerEU policy demands it. Mobilising the solid biomass resource can contribute to renewable heat. Increased blending rates of liquid biofuels has both emissions’ reduction and fossil fuel displacement benefits. Over the last few weeks, IrBEA, on behalf of members, has lobbied in advance of the budget on the issues impacting our members in the bioenergy sector. IrBEA is calling for a mixture of supports, policy announcements and practical issues to be addressed in the Budget and Finance Act which are impacting our industry and members.

Finan continued “Bioenergy is thriving across Europe. Why is the Irish Government an outlier and not embracing this opportunity also? The EU Commission identifies that the member state with the largest potential growth for biogas / biomethane production is Ireland. Yet to date, we have had mainly Government inaction or inertia in realising this potential. In challenging times, it is vital to exploit all proven opportunities to tackle climate change and enable security of energy supply.”

Despite the fact that Ireland has a natural advantage in producing bioenergy due to our mild climate and fertile land, Ireland ranks bottom of the EU table in terms of its generation and use of renewable heat. We now have a unique opportunity to build a significant industry with multiple benefits using solid, liquid and gaseous bioenergy.

Finan concluded “While our focus is on using bioenergy in the transition away from fossil fuels, we acknowledge that building a sustainable economic and social recovery should also embrace related renewable technologies as well achieving the development of sustainable materials and the protection of our ecosystems. Essentially, we need to marshal a wide range of technologies and renewable fuels to decarbonise the energy sector across heat, transport and electricity. This will provide opportunities for many, including farmers and foresters through farm diversification and development of alternative enterprises, development of rural jobs and addressing the climate changes and emissions challenges faced by the country. The budget is an opportunity to jump-start bioenergy, buttress energy supply, and realise all this other potential with it.”

ENDS.

For Further Information Contact: Seán Finan IrBEA CEO on 087 4146480

Notes to Editors:
Summary of IrBEA’s Bioenergy budget measures include:

1. Mobilising an Irish Biogas/Biomethane Industry:
Introduction of a Biogas / biomethane support scheme to mobilise an Irish biogas industry on a phased basis. The biogas / biomethane industry needs to be mobilised with policy, incentives, measures and supports similar to what is happening across Europe.
In the current environment of high fossil energy prices and challenges around energy security there should be no further delay in giving market certainty and supporting the development of the industry.

2. Support Scheme for Renewable Heat (SSRH):
Budget provision for widespread roll out of the Support Scheme for Renewable Heat (SSRH) in 2023 and rapid resolution of administrative implementation issues with the scheme. These issues are severely impacting on the schemes potential to contribute to national renewable heat and greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. The Minister and SEAI need to ensure that dedicated resources are assigned to assist with the efficient administration and implementation of the Support Scheme for Renewable Heat (SSRH) programme.

3. Carbon Tax:
Despite record fossil energy prices, the carbon tax increase should proceed by a minimum of €10/tonne in the budget, provided effective measures are in implemented to protect vulnerable members of society potentially exposed to fuel poverty. Revenue generated from carbon tax increases should  provide support for the development of bioenergy and a biogas / biomethane industry in Ireland on a phased and sustainable basis.

4. Provision in Finance Act – Revenue treatment of Biomass Equipment:
Provision be made in the Finance Act for the revenue treatment of biomass chipping and related equipment to be the same as the treatment of other mobile machinery such as mobile cranes and concrete pumping equipment. This is specially related to using rebated fuel, registration of overweight vehicles and tachograph usage.

5. Biofuel Obligation Scheme:
As per the Biofuel Obligation Scheme (BOS), biofuels are blended with petrol and diesel available at the forecourt. We call for the immediate increase of blending rates to E10 (10% Ethanol) petrol blend and B12 (12% Biodiesel) diesel blend in Ireland. This would increase the blending rates from the current substitution rates of E5 for petrol and B7 for Diesel.

6. Grant Scheme for Eco Design Heating Appliances:
The National home retrofit scheme is ambitious but challenged due to the high costs, availability of labour & materials and disruption to individuals. While successful for some households, the programmes dedication to the energy efficiency first principal has led it to be unsuitable, costly and disruptive for a large proportion of the population. While we support the energy efficiency first principal where it can be economically viable to pursue, decarbonisation is the priority in the short term. This means looking at fuel use and heating technologies. We call for the introduction in this budget of a grant scheme to support the transition from fossil fuel appliances to eco-design compliant biomass appliances at a residential level. This will support an energy transition to the use of cleaner, energy efficient appliances which will contribute to greenhouse gas emissions savings, and rural employment.

7. Energy Crop Support Scheme:
That the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine make provision in their budget for the introduction of support for the energy crop sector. The Irish Bioenergy Association believes that this is an effective way of providing additional indigenous biomass for the Support Scheme for Renewable Heat (SSRH) installations, provides an alternative farm enterprise, potentially reduce livestock number, promoting the bioeconomy, rural development, and sustainable jobs.

8. Forestry Programme Implementation Resources:
We support the calls by the forest industry for financial provision be made for increased staff and specialist resourcing in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine to address forestry licensing issues and backlog.

9. Financial Instruments and Loans Interest Loans:
Introduce financial instruments to assist of Renewable technologies such as:
Expand the capital investment to build district heating networks via the climate action fund.
Introduce a low cost guaranteed loan facility through the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SCBI) or similar for the development of bioenergy renewable project similar to the SCBI Future Growth Loan Scheme introduced for the farming sector a few years ago.

Notes to Editors:

What is Bioenergy?
Bioenergy can be defined as any form of energy that is derived from living organisms, either
plant or animal. It encompasses a wide range of different types and origins. It can take the form of solid, liquid or gaseous fuel and can be used to provide renewable energy across a variety of sectors including heating, electricity generation and transport sectors.

What are the different forms of Bioenergy?
• Solid biofuels and wood fuels: Wood pellet, woodchip, energy crops, firewood and biomass briquettes
• Gaseous Biofuels: Biogas and Biomethane
• Liquid Biofuels: Bioethanol, Biodiesel, Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil and Bio-oil

About the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA)
IrBEA was founded in 1999. Its role is to promote the bioenergy industry and to develop this important sector on the island of Ireland. The diverse membership includes farmers and foresters, fuel suppliers, energy development companies, equipment manufacturers and suppliers, engineers, financiers and tax advisers, legal firms, consultants, planners, research organisations, local authorities, education, and advisory bodies – anyone with an interest in the bioenergy industry. IrBEA is recognised by Government and agencies as the voice of the bioenergy industry. The association’s main objectives are to influence policy makers to promote the development of bioenergy, and to promote the interests of members. Improving public awareness, networking, and information sharing, and liaising with similar interest groups are other key areas of work in promoting bioenergy as an environmentally, economically, and socially sustainable energy. Further information on the association is available at www.irbea.org

IrBEA 21st National Bioenergy Conference – Tuesday 11th October 2022

The Irish Bioenergy Association 21st National Bioenergy Conference will take place on Tuesday 11th October at the Lyrath Estate Hotel in Kilkenny.

We are delighted to announce that Bord na Móna have kindly  agreed to be the Headline Sponsors of this event. We also very grateful to Ethanol Europe to step in as a Co-sponsor to this event.

Headline Sponsor

 We look forward to welcoming IrBEA members and a diverse range of stakeholders to this event. We have a strong line up of  leading, influential speakers for the day that including: Paul Deane (MaREI), Marie Donnelly (Chairperson on the Climate Advisory Council), Laura Burke (EPA), Rowena Dwyer (Enterprise Ireland) and Stephen Blewitt (Aurivo Co-operative). More will be announced over the coming days.

This year’s conference will focus on the need to accelerate the uptake of bioenergy technology deployment in Ireland. IrBEA acknowledges that most larger businesses and new start-ups are aware of their responsibilities to be more sustainable and energy efficient. At this year’s conference, IrBEA wants to promote the role bioenergy can play in this transition from fossil fuels, helping businesses reduce costs, improve energy security, reduce supply chain risks, reduce carbon footprints, and improve company sustainability ratings.

The event is targeted at a range of interested parties including: bioenergy project developers, utility providers, policymakers, political representatives, financiers, large energy users, businesses, engineers, landowners and environmental groups. Attendees value the opportunity to meet those actively involved in the bioenergy sector, to extend their network and make new contacts. It is also a chance to hear about latest developments, successful projects and case studies in the sector.

We will also be offering sponsorship opportunities, further details can be found on the event website. If you would like to discuss this further with us, please contact Teresa O’Brien at 0861256709  teresaobrien@irbea.org or Seán Finan at seanfinan@irbea.org.

Conference website https//.nationalbioenergyconference.ie

Delegate tickets and trade stands https://irbeaconference22.eventbrite.ie

Co-Sponsors

PRESS RELEASE:  IrBEA launches bioenergy factsheet series

Pictured launching the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) factsheet series are L to R: Paddy Phelan 3CEA CEO and IrBEA President, Minister of State Pippa Hackett and Seán Finan IrBEA CEO.

Immediate Release: 01/09/2022

Pictured launching the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) factsheet series are L to R: Paddy Phelan 3CEA CEO and IrBEA President, Minister of State Pippa Hackett and Seán Finan IrBEA CEO.

The Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) launches the bioenergy factsheet series today. The aim of the factsheet series is to provide information to a wide range of stakeholders on the various forms and aspects of bioenergy. The titles in the series to date are:

  • Bioenergy – An Overview
  • Wood and Solid Biomass Fuels
  • Biogas
  • Biofuels
  • Biochar
  • Energy Crops

Seán Finan, CEO of the Irish Bioenergy Association said  “We are delighted to launch our bioenergy factsheet series as a knowledge transfer and information resource for the promotion of the different bioenergy sectors. While other renewable energies are easier for the public to comprehend (e.g. wind or solar), bioenergy is made up of a wide range of technologies and fuels and can be utilised to provide heat, electricity, and transport fuels.”

Bioenergy makes up 67.2% of all renewable energy across the world. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recognises that bioenergy represents the largest current contributor to renewable energy and is likely to remain that way for at least the first half of this century. Bioenergy has a strong role in carbon removal and reduction of emissions, as well as in the development of bioenergy-based fuel alternatives for fossil fuels. Bioenergy can complement the food, fibre, and forestry product sectors. In Ireland, bioenergy requires investment, support and the right policy measures to be in place, to ensure the continued sustainability of the sector.

Paddy Phelan IrBEA President said: “The factsheets and the ongoing work of IrBEA in each of the sectors covered is particularly relevant in the current crisis of high fossil energy prices, security of energy supply, urgent need for decarbonisation and climate action. The Irish bioenergy sector is unique in that it can provide an indigenous energy solution to all the current challenges. Bioenergy can produce continuous, storable, and dispatchable renewable energy delivered through local supply chains, offering employment opportunities and economic activity.”

 

ENDS

For Further Information please contact Seán Finan IrBEA CEO on 087-4146480

Webinar 34 – Bioenergy: Launching IrBEA’s Factsheet Series

A recording of this webinar can be found HERE.

Topic Overview
Over the last few months, the Irish Bioenergy Association (IrBEA) has worked on developing a series of factsheets covering the main bioenergy sectors. The first six factsheets were presented on this webinar by the Executive team and can be viewed on the IrBEA website HERE.

The titles include:

  • Bioenergy – An Overview
  • Wood and Solid Biomass Fuels
  • Biogas
  • Biofuels
  • Biochar
  • Energy Crops

The aim of the factsheet series is to provide information to a wide range of stakeholders on the various forms and aspects of bioenergy. While other renewable energies are easier for the public to comprehend (e.g., wind or solar), bioenergy is made up of a wide range of technologies and fuels and can be utilised to provide heat, electricity, and transport fuels.

The IrBEA executive team present the factsheets and ongoing work of the association in each of the sectors covered. This is particularly relevant in the current crisis of high fossil energy prices, security of energy supply, urgent need for decarbonisation and climate action. The Irish bioenergy sector is unique in that it can provide an indigenous energy solution to all the current challenges. Bioenergy can produce continuous, storable, and dispatchable renewable energy delivered through local supply chains, offering employment opportunities and economic activity.