Save energy, money and emissions in 2018

CASTLEBLAYNEY ENERGY SHOW ANNOUNCED FOR 22ND FEBRUARY

In 2018 many of us can save money by reducing the amount of electricity and oil or other fuels we use.   As an SEAI report concludes that individuals, businesses, and communities need to reduce energy consumption, the Castleblayney Sustainable Energy Group and the Íontas Centre announce news of the first ever Castleblayney Energy Show. It will take place in the Íontas Centre on Thursday, 22 February and will run from 5pm to 9pm. The event is aimed at helping homeowners and small businesses in the county find solutions that will save them energy and money at a time of rising energy prices. Attendance will be free of charge for everyone.  

The Íontas Centre, Castleblayney will be the venue for the Castleblayney Energy Show which will take place on 22nd February.

The Castleblayney Energy Show will feature a wide range of local businesses involved in supplying energy solutions for the home and small businesses such as insulation, energy controls, solar energy, wood burning appliances, heat pumps, energy efficient lighting and electric cars. Information on grants will also be available to home owners. In all it is expected that there will be up to 25 exhibition stands at the event. A number of informative talks for householders and one for small businesses are also being planned for the evening. The event is supported by SEAI and Monaghan County Council. For further details of the event contact Helen Martin at the Íontas Centre 042 9753400 (Wed – Fri) or email castleblayneyenergy@gmail.com.

OUR ENERGY USE “IS NOT REDUCING FAST ENOUGH”

In 2016 the energy used by people in Ireland grew by 3.7%. This led

Jim Gannon, CEO of SEAI

to an increase in energy-related carbon dioxide emissions by 3.6%. In other words we are increasing our climate altering emissions. This information was revealed in a recent report from the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). Although energy use is growing at a slower rate than economic growth, SEAI Chief Executive Jim Gannon said that Ireland is not decoupling economic growth from energy use quickly enough. He said that both homes and businesses now have a “personal responsibility to find ways to be more energy efficient”. “No one organisation or policy can address the problem of climate change in isolation – it needs urgent action across our society,” he added.

Continuing his comments on the SEAI report Mr Gannon said: “While our cars and homes are becoming more efficient, and we are investing record amounts in efficiency policies, these actions on their own may not get us to where we need to be. There is something you can do today that will make a real difference – whether it’s turning down the thermostat, switching off a light, looking at energy ratings of appliances when you buy, or choosing an electric car. Supports are available to help with this and all of us, as homeowners, businesses and motorists need to make better choices and in much greater numbers. “For details of the various SEAI grants see seai.ie.

If there is a substantial reduction in energy use this would result in savings in the expected money leaving Ireland to pay for imported coal, oil and gas. In addition it would help us in Ireland get closer to our EU emissions targets and so result in lower than expected EU fines for our country. Overall this would mean less tax for us all to pay and better health and welfare services could be provided to us all.

EXAMPLE OF SWEDEN

Carbon neutrality, or having a net zero carbon footprint, refers to achieving net zero carbon emissions by balancing a measured amount of carbon released with an equivalent amount sequestered or offset. Many climate scientists say that every country needs to be carbon neutral well before 2050 if the world is to avoid climate chaos. On Monday last 1st January 2018 a law came into effect in Sweden that binds the country to having net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions by 2045. They join a very small group of countries that have committed to being carbon neutral before 2050. Ireland is not among them.

Considerable effort is needed on the part of Irish Government and all sectors of society here if we are to come anywhere near meeting a goal of carbon neutrality before 2050. In relation to County Monaghan, it would be useful if we knew what are the current levels of greenhouse gas emissions from Co Monaghan. Hopefully the EPA will produce such information and we can compare our levels with national and international levels. Meantime a concerted effort is needed everywhere to reduce energy use and also to replace oil and other fossil fuels with renewables.  Methane and other greenhouse gas emissions from the agri sector also need to be cut considerably. It will be a challenging road ahead but one that is necessary for the sake of future generations.

Events on in January and February can be found here

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