Community-energy: empowering local authorities and their communities to guide local sustainable energy roll-out Jurys Inn, Custom House Quay, 20th November 2014.

Issued in news on October 29, 2014 at 10:12:00.

Publication cover - CO-POWER workshop_Dublin_ICLEI - Cover image for CO-POWER workshop_Dublin_ICLEI
Cover image for CO-POWER workshop_Dublin_ICLEI

Local decision-makers, planners, local government associations / networks and energy agencies are invited to participate in this free workshop addressing the potential for roll-out of community energy in Ireland.

The event will include topics such as how local authorities can contribute to local economic regeneration, how they can plan efficiently for Renewable Energy and how local authorities can stimulate the local green economy.

Best practice from across Ireland will also be showcased during the workshop.

Download the programme for the event here.

More information at this link.

The end of power for the people - payment scheme for microgeneration closes

Issued in news on November 03, 2014 at 13:35:00.

The end of power for the people
ESB and Electric Ireland ends its payment scheme for Micro Renewable Generators
It is time for the Government to insist that all renewable energy generators get paid for their energy, regardless of their size or the technology


Friends of the Earth are extremely disappointed to learn that ESB and Electric Ireland will no longer be paying new renewable energy generators for the electricity they produce. Electric Ireland was the only utility in Ireland which bought renewable electricity from its customers. The payment was offered for surplus electricity generated from wind, solar, combined heat and power and hydro. The scheme will close to new applicants at the end of the year, so from 2015 citizens who want to generate and sell renewable electricity will not be able to.

Commenting Kate Ruddock, Policy and Campaigns Manager at Friends of the Earth, said

'As a society we need to transition to a renewable future. This transformation will only be successful with the involvement of all of the people of Ireland. The current energy policy is to support big developers to build big wind farms. This alone is not sustainable. We need a mix of technologies, particularly local generation and local usage. With the ending of payments for citizen and locally generated renewable energy, the people of Ireland are essentially being blocked from entering this market.

Not paying small electricity generators is akin to only paying a handful of big farmers for their food produce, and forcing every small food producer to give away their product for free. '

Irish micro generation rates are amongst the lowest in Europe. With only 5 MW of installed capacity[1], there is huge potential for this industry to grow. While the costs of micro installation have reduced significantly in recent years, particularly for solar electricity, the economics only make sense if you can sell your surplus electricity to the grid as it is produced, and buy it when you need more than you produce. There were a number of problems with the Electric Ireland scheme - it wasn't available for industry, it was never guaranteed and the price of 9c/kwh which was available is roughly only half the retail price meaning it was still economically challenging for householders to make it work. In the UK, rates for micro electricity generation are closer to 18p(23c)/kwh and there is also a payment for local generation of renewable heat. With no such payments available now in Ireland, it is likely that the micro generation industry will completely stall.

Kate Ruddock continued

'The Electric Ireland scheme was a voluntary scheme and the only one of its kind in Ireland. Its closure highlights the significant barriers and complete lack of support for individuals and communities to get involved in renewable energy. Friends of the Earth is calling on the Government to introduce a mandatory payment for all producers of renewable electricity, big and small, at a price that is fair for both consumers and generators.

For an individual, community, business or industry that wants to reduce its carbon emissions, the easiest thing to do should be to generate solar electricity from your roof. Sadly this is no so here in Ireland. With solar levels roughly 80% as good as Madrid, and comparable to levels across Northern Germany, it is madness, but not surprising that solar electricity only represents 0.3% of electricity produced in Ireland, or about 1 MW. In the UK they have 3,400 MW of solar electricity installed, much of it on the roofs of peoples' homes.

Solar and wind complement each other perfectly and should both be incentivised. Usually when it is not windy, solar works really well, and during the night when there is no light, usually it is much windier. There is now no support at all for solar generation, big or small, only support for big wind.'

Read the full entry »

Climate Champions Application Form Now Available

Issued in news on October 01, 2014 at 13:19:00.

Climate champions 2014 image

Do you....

Want to join a movement of young activists in Europe?
Want to be creatively involved in the global movement for Climate Justice?
Make sure Ireland does its fair share to Stop Climate Chaos?


If so....
Young Friends of the Earth have an exciting opportunity to bring a group of young people to Brussels to join activists demanding fair action on climate change. This week of action will take place as our leaders meet to decide on the future of our world at the UN Climate talks in December.

 

Click here to download the application form.

 

To be part of the movement please email the application form before the 19th October to:
youngfoe@foe.ie

We look forward to hearing from you!

Briefing on EU Energy Efficiency for Milan informal ministerial meeting

Issued in publications on October 01, 2014.

Publication cover - Briefing on EU Energy Efficiency for Milan informal ministerial meeting - Cover image for Briefing on EU Energy Efficiency for Milan informal ministerial meeting

Nobody can doubt the benefits of an ambitious energy efficiency
target for 2030. EU gas imports are expected to fall by just 9% with
a 25% efficiency target, but by 22% with a 30% target and by 40%
with a 40% target. As the Financial Times puts it, roof insulation is
“Europe’s secret weapon” against dependency on imported gas.
New data also predicts big economic and employment gains with
higher ambition (you will see detailed numbers for Ireland in this
briefing). Europe currently wastes €500 billion a year on oil and gas
imports. Far better to invest that money in energy efficiency and
renewables!

What about the costs? We now know the European Commission
used three different methods to calculate the costs of the 2030
efficiency target. But it only published the most expensive method
(an obsolete approach used as far back as 2003).

If you believe the Commission’s published version, drilling for oil
in Iraq on the edge of Islamic State territory is a safer investment
than building zero-energy homes in Europe. It’s absurd! But when
more rational cost and risk assumptions are applied, the costs of the
Commission’s proposed 30% target fall by up to €600 billion. You can
see the details on page seven.

We’re convinced this points to one conclusion: member states must
support three fair and adequate and binding targets for 2030 for
greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency and renewables.

Tre obiettivi vincolanti!

Go to download page »

Taoiseach's address to Ban Ki-Moon Climate Summit

Issued in news on September 23, 2014 at 19:15:00.

Kenny in New York

Address by the Taoiseach to UN Secretary General’s Climate Change Summit,

New York, 23 September 2014

Secretary General, I welcome your timely initiative.

Global warming is a stark reality that can only be dealt with by a collective global response. We are all interdependent and interconnected... we share a common humanity... and each of us must play our part.

Leaders, Governments and corporations have a responsibility to define objectives, make policy decisions and take action to preserve our planet and secure a prosperous future for its inhabitants.

When we talk about global challenges like economic growth, job creation, global food and nutrition needs, and energy, the watchword has to be sustainability.

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Tell us what you love ... and Enda too

Issued in news on September 23, 2014 at 14:52:00.

Green hearts for the love of

Enda Kenny is at the UN in New York today to speak at Ban Ki-Moon's summit on climate action. Hundreds of you joined our call to urge him to say the Climate Bill will be enacted before the end of the year and to declare Ireland will be fossil-fuel free by 2040. A thousand people came to the People's Climate Picnic in Stephen's Green in Dublin on Sunday. Thank you.

Now we need to keep the spotlight on Enda to make sure he keeps his word when he comes home.

As part of Stop Climate Chaos we've launched a campaign called #fortheloveof. Something that each of us loves is threatenned by by climate change. We want you to share it, with Enda.

Read the full entry »

For the love of ... Enda must act on climate

Issued in campaign actions.

Green hearts for the love of

It's time for our Taoiseach to show leadership on climate change

Young Friends of the Earth Climate Champions Competition 2014 Now Open!

Issued in news on September 03, 2014 at 13:59:00.

Climate champions 2014 image

Do you....

  • Want to join a movement of young activists in Europe?
  • Want to be creatively involved in the global movement for Climate Justice?
  • Make sure Ireland does its fair share to Stop Climate Chaos?

If so....
Young Friends of the Earth have an exciting opportunity to bring a group of young people to Brussels to join activists demanding fair action on climate change. This week of action will take place as our leaders meet to decide on the future of our world at the UN Climate talks in December.

To be part of the movement contact us for more information before the 10th October at:
youngfoe@foe.ie
01 6394652
Facebook YoungFriendsoftheEarthIreland
Twitter @YoungFOEIrl

We look forward to hearing from you!

Durkan's rejection of drilling application at potential fracking site is welcome

Issued in news on August 12, 2014 at 10:48:00.

mark-durkan-doeni - Mark H Durkan MLA
Mark H Durkan MLA

Commenting on the Northern Ireland Environment Minister's decision to reject Tamboran's exploratory drilling application for Belcoo, Friends of the Earth Northern Ireland's Director, James Orr, said,

"Minister Durkan should be congratulated on his decision. He is right to conclude that an Environmental Impact Assessment is required and that exploratory drilling should not go ahead without planning permission. It is particularly heartening to see Mr Durkan invoking the precautionary principle. Northern Ireland's environment has suffered serious damage from unauthorised quarries and landfill sites, pollution factories and sewerage works, and overdevelopment of the countryside. It is good to see an Environment Minister finally taking the job of environmental protection seriously.

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Government should aim to make Ireland fossil fuel free

Issued in news on August 06, 2014 at 11:32:00.

Government should aim to make Ireland fossil fuel free
As consultation closes, ministers must lead a genuine public debate on our energy choices

Friends of the Earth has called on the Government to set a goal of Ireland being fossil fuel free by 2050. The environmental campaigning group made the call on the final day of the Government's public consultation on Ireland's future energy policy. The deadline for written submissions is 5.30pm. The Government has promised there will now be an opportunity for the public to discuss the policy options in regional workshops before a White Paper is developed.

Read the full entry »

24 hours to have your say on Ireland's energy future

Issued in news on July 30, 2014 at 13:31:00.

Poolbeg sunset by Philip Milne - Poolbeg chimneys. A monument to the sunset industries of the fossil fuel age. Photo by Philip Milne.
Poolbeg chimneys. A monument to the sunset industries of the fossil fuel age. Photo by Philip Milne.

One click now can help change energy policy for good.

A company called Tamboran Resources has just moved on site in Belcoo, Fermanagh, to prepare to test drill for fracking. They also hold licences in Leitrim. A lobby group is calling for a nuclear power plant to be built in Moneypoint, Co Clare. The Minister for Energy thinks "Ireland will remain dependent on fossil fuels well into the future". We're still ripping up our bogs and burning peat to make electrcity. And Board Na Mona want to build a factory to make "smokeless coal".

Is this the energy future you want? What should Ireland do?

Read the full entry »

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