Bioenergy Project Ignites Interest In Western Region

 

RASLRES: REGIONAL APPROACHES TO STIMULATING LOCAL RENEWABLE ENERGY SOLUTIONS

The Western Region of Ireland is poised to reap the benefit of an almost €3 million multi-national bio-energy project being led by the Western Development Commission. The RASLRES project is a European-funded initiative that aims to benefit the Western Region in a number of crucial areas related to renewable bio-mass, namely supplying local energy from local sources and delivering sustainable jobs to rural areas. At a meeting of regional stakeholders in Carrick-on-Shannon 12th March, it was disclosed that already the WDC has received around 125 enquiries about involvement in the RASLRES project from regional businesses and organisations, which has overwhelmed and delighted the partners according to Ian Brannigan, Regional Development Manager for the WDC.

“The interest in being part of this innovative project in the West is clear from the stir it has already created. We see RASLRES as being a stepping stone to enable rural areas to use their natural resources to create sustainable economic development and help Ireland reach emissions targets in the process.”

Bernadette Phelan, Regional Development Executive at the WDC explained, “A lot of the forestry plantations in the west were planted during the 1980s and 1990s. This resource is therefore at an age suitable for first and subsequent thinnings so the project is very timely. Developing the wood energy market will create a market for these forestry thinnings and will encourage farmers to actively manage their forestry which in the long run results in a better timber harvest when the trees are fully mature.”

WDC research shows that the West could develop an indigenous, sustainable, renewable energy resource delivering 11% of the regions’ heat needs by 2020 and create up to 900 additional jobs. To deliver 11% of the region’s heat needs would require over 470,000 tonnes of wood fuel, generate an additional €15 million to the economy and provide €1.7 million to the west’s farming sector each year. The jobs created would be spread across the entire supply chain from private forest owners, to haulage companies, to plumbing, engineering, and electrical companies. Additionally the estimated CO2 emissions saved annually would equate to taking over 92,000 cars off the roads in the west of Ireland

Given the high level of interest already shown in being part of the RASLRES project, Brannigan stated that formal expressions of interest are now being sought from wood growers, suppliers or potential end users of wood energy. Brannigan urged people, however, to submit their expressions of interest for consideration immediately by contacting Ian Brannigan at ianbrannigan@wdc.ie.

FURTHER INFORMATION:

Ian Brannigan
Regional Development Manager
Western Development Commission
Tel: +353 (0)94 9861893
Mobile: +353 (0)86 6048012
Email: ianbrannigan@wdc.ie

NOTE TO THE EDITOR:

RASLRES is a project funded by the Northern Periphery Programme (www.northernperiphery.eu). The RASLRES project will:

  • build awareness of opportunities for rural communities to produce and supply locally produced biomass (wood, seaweed and energy crops) to towns and cities
  •  provide business development support to rural biomass producing communities
  • development of biomass supply chains through direct business and community engagement

 RASLRES is an international partnership which includes:

•  Western Development Commission – Ireland
•  Action Renewables – Northern Ireland, UK
•  Environmental Research Institute, North Highland College – Scotland
•  Municipality of Norsjö – Sweden
•  Oceanrainforest Ltd – Faroe Islands
•  VTT, Technical Research Centre – Finland

Ian Brannigan was speaking at a meeting of the Regional Wood Energy Advisory Group in Carrick-On-Shannon on Friday 12th March. The Regional Wood Energy Action Group will act as an advisory group to the project for its duration until 2012. Its members include:

  • Paul Dykes and Pearse Buckley, Sustainable Energy Ireland
  • Steven Meyen and Barry Caslin, Teagasc
  • Richard Browne, Department from Communications, Energy and Natural Resources
  • Doirín Graham and Gloria Callinan, Clare Local Development
  • Geraldine O’Sullivan, Irish Farmers Association
  • Peter Keavney, Galway City Council
  • Peter Cafferkey, Department of Agriculture
  • Conor Lawlor, Sligo Institute of Technology
  • Charles Sweeney, Donegal County Council
  • Fiona Ní Mhurchadha, Udarás na Gaelteachta
  • John O’Brien, Irish Bioenergy Association

 

SPREAGTAR SPÉIS I dTIONSCADAL BITHFHUINNIMH I RÉIGIÚN AN IARTHAIR

 

RASLRES: CINEÁLACHA CUR CHUIGE RÉIGIÚNACHA CHUN RÉITIGH ÁITIÚLA MAIDIR LE FUINNEAMH IN ATHNUAITE A SPREAGADH

Tá Réigiún an Iarthair chun tairbhe a bhaint as tionscadal bithfhuinnimh ilnáisiúnta de luach beagnach €3 mhilliún atá á stiúradh ag Coimisiún Forbartha an Iarthair. Is tionscnamh maoinithe ag an Eoraip é RASLRES a bhfuil mar aidhm aige cabhrú le Réigiún an Iarthair tairbhe a bhaint as roinnt réimsí ríthábhachtacha a bhaineann le bithmhais in athnuaite, is iad sin, fuinneamh áitiúil a sholáthar ó fhoinsí áitiúla agus poist inbhuanaithe a chur ar fáil i gceantair tuaithe. Ag cruinniú na bpáirtithe leasmhara réigiúnacha i gCora Droma Rúisc an 12 Márta, nochtadh go raibh thart ar 125 fiosrúchán ó ghnóthais agus ó eagraíochtaí réigiúnacha le spéis acu i bpáirt a ghlacadh sa tionscadal RASLRES faighte ag an WDC cheana féin, rud a chuir gliondar croí ar na comhpháirtithe de réir Ian Brannigan, Bainisteoir Forbartha Réigiúnaí leis an WDC.

“Is léir ón bplé atá á dhéanamh faoi go bhfuil spéis ag daoine i bpáirt a ghlacadh sa tionscadal nuálaíoch seo san Iarthar. Is cloch chora é RASLRES a chuirfidh ar chumas ceantar tuaithe a n acmhainní nádúrtha a úsáid chun forbairt eacnamaíoch inbhuanaithe a dhéanamh, agus a chabhróidh le hÉirinn spriocanna maidir le hastuithe a bhaint amach ag an am céanna.”

Mhínigh Bernadette Phelan, Feidhmeannach Forbartha Réigiúnaí leis an WDC, “Cuireadh an chuid de na fáschoillte foraoiseachta san iarthar le linn na 1980í agus na 1990í. Mar sin, tá sé in am an acmhainn seo a thanú den chéad uair, agus beidh sí le tanú arís ina dhiaidh sin. Dá bhrí sin, tá an tionscadal thar a bheith tráthúil. Tríd an margadh fuinnimh adhmaid a fhorbairt, cruthófar margadh do na tanúcháin foraoiseachta seo agus spreagfar d’fheirmeoirí bainistíocht ghníomhach a dhéanamh ar a bhforaoisí, rud a bheidh ina chúis le baint fheabhsaithe adhmaid nuair a bheidh na crainn go hiomlán aibí.”

Léiríonn taighde an WDC go bhféadfadh an tIarthar acmhainn fuinnimh dhúchasach, inbhuanaithe, in athnuaite a fhorbairt a sheachadfadh 11% de riachtanais teasa an réigiúin faoi 2020 agus a chruthódh suas le 900 post breise. Chun 11% de riachtanais teasa an réigiúin a chur ar fáil, bheadh gá le breis agus 470,000 tonna de bhreosla adhmaid, ghinfí €15 mhilliún breise don gheilleagar, agus chuirfí €1.7 milliún ar fáil d’earnáil feirmeoireachta an iarthair gach bliain. Bheadh na poist a chruthófaí scaipthe ar fud an tslabhra soláthair, ó úinéirí foraoisí príobháideacha, go cuideachtaí tarlaithe bóthair, go cuideachtaí pluiméireachta, innealtóireachta agus leictreachais. Lena chois sin, meastar go mbeadh an laghdú ar astuithe CO2 in aghaidh na bliana cothrom le breis agus 92,000 gluaisteán a bhaint de bhóithre in iarthar na hÉireann.

Toisc líon na ndaoine a luaigh go mbeadh spéis acu i bpáirt a ghlacadh i dtionscadal RASLRES cheana féin, chuir an tUasal Brannigan in iúl go bhfuil léirithe spéise foirmiúla á lorg ó shaothróirí agus soláthraithe adhmaid nó ó úsáideoirí deiridh féideartha fuinnimh adhmaid anois. Mhol an tUasal Brannigan do dhaoine a léirithe spéise a chur in iúl láithreach trí ríomhphost a sheoladh chuige ag ianbrannigan@wdc.ie chun go bhféadfaí iad a mheasúnú.

TUILLEADH FAISNÉISE:
Ian Brannigan
Bainisteoir Forbartha Réigiúnaí
Coimisiún Forbartha an Iarthair
Teil: +353 (0)94 9861893
Fón póca: +353 (0)86 6048012
Ríomhphost: ianbrannigan@wdc.ie

NÓTA DON EAGARTHÓIR:

Is tionscadal é RASLRES atá maoinithe ag Clár an Imill Thuaidh (www.northernperiphery.eu). Maidir leis an tionscadal RASLRES:

• méadóidh sé feasacht ar na deiseanna atá ann do phobail tuaithe bithmhais áitiúil (adhmad, feamainn agus barraí fuinnimh) a tháirgeadh agus a sholáthar do bhailte agus do chathracha
• cuirfidh sé tacaíocht forbartha gnó ar fáil do phobail áitiúla a tháirgfidh bithmhais
• forbróidh sé slabhraí soláthair bithmhaise trí chaidreamh díreach a bhunú le gnóthais agus leis an bpobal

Is comhpháirtíocht idirnáisiúnta í RASLRES a bhfuil na grúpaí seo a leanas páirteach inti:

• Coimisiún Forbartha an Iarthair – Éire
• Action Renewables – Tuaisceart Éireann, an RA
• Environmental Research Institute, North Highland College – an Albain
• Bardas Norsjö – an tSualainn
• Oceanrainforest Teo – Oileáin Fharó
• VTT, Lárionad um Thaighde Teicniúil – an Fhionlainn

Bhí Ian Brannigan ag labhairt ag cruinniú den Ghrúpa Comhairleach Réigiúnach ar Fhuinneamh Adhmaid i gCora Droma Rúisc Dé hAoine, an 12 Márta. Cuirfidh an Grúpa Comhairleach Réigiúnach ar Fhuinneamh Adhmaid comhairle ar an tionscadal ar feadh a shaoil, is é sin go dtí 2012. I measc a chuid ball tá:

• Paul Dykes agus Pearse Buckley, Fuinneamh Inmharthana Éireann
• Steven Meyen agus Barry Caslin, Teagasc
• Richard Browne, an Roinn Cumarsáide, Fuinnimh agus Acmhainní Nádúrtha
• Doirín Graham agus Gloria Callinan, Forbairt Áitiúil an Chláir
• Geraldine O’Sullivan, Feirmeoirí Aontaithe na hÉireann
• Peter Keavney, Comhairle Cathrach na Gaillimhe
• Peter Cafferkey, an Roinn Talmhaíochta
• Conor Lawlor, Institiúid Teicneolaíochta Shligigh
• Charles Sweeney, Comhairle Contae Dhún na nGall
• Fiona Ní Mhurchadha, Údarás na Gaeltachta
• John O’Brien, Cumann Bithfhuinnimh na hÉireann