Minister Hogan launches RASLRES Bioenergy Tool in West of Ireland

Earlier today at the RASLRES Local Authority Forum the Minister for the Environment, Mr. Phil Hogan, T.D. launched the RASLRES Bioenergy Tool.

The Bioenergy Tool is one of the primary outputs of the RASLRES project.  It is an online service which has been developed to stimulate key bioenergy markets, initially in Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Sweden. The Bioenergy Tool currently provides local, regional and national information for wood fuel, as well as for exciting energy alternatives such as reed canary grass and marine biomass. The Tool is available at


The Tool has been designed as a user-friendly way for local people and businesses – be they farmers, foresters, policy makers, users of bioenergy or the general public – to access information about bioenergy use, supply and policy in their region.

Today’s event, led by the Western Development Commission (WDC) under the EU RASLRES project, was designed to assist the development of renewable energy frameworks for County Managers and Directors of Services from across the eight local authorities of the Western Region, to drive local economic growth through the bioenergy market in the West of Ireland.

Speaking at the event (on behalf of the Chair of the WDC) Mr Vincent Roche, WDC member stated; “the attendance at this event significant in terms of the representation from the eight Local Authorities in the region and from our European partners and demonstrates their recognition of the importance of developments in renewable energies for the Western region”.

Speakers at the event included Mr Niclas Forsling, Head of the Northern Periphery Programme Secretariat and Mr Gabor Nagy, Programme Officer – Covenant of Mayors for the European Commission, Directorate-General for Energy.

Ian Brannigan, CEO (Acting) WDC commented; ‘We are delighted to welcome Mr Niclas Forsling and formally acknowledge the support of the Northern Periphery Programme in funding the RASLRES project.  We also welcome Mr Gabor Nagy from the office of the covenant of mayors and look forward to joining with them in developing the western region’s capability to engage in growth through the sustainable energy agenda”.



Ian Brannigan
Western Development Commission
Dillon House
Co. Roscommon
Phone: 086 6048012



What is RASLRES?

RASLRES is a €3 million European bio-energy project which seeks to grow the number of local businesses involved in the sector and is led by the Western Development Commission (WDC), Ireland with partners in Sweden, Scotland, Northern Ireland, the Faroe Islands and Finland.  RASLRES is funded by the INTERREG IVB – Northern Periphery Programme.

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

RASLRES will conclude with a showcase of the outputs from all partner regions in autumn 2012. Further details on the RASLRES project are available on