Strong efficiency performance is springboard for new Climate Action Plan targets
19 February 2020: Public bodies have made €1.3 billion in energy savings and avoided 4.6 million tonnes of CO2 emissions since 2009 according to latest analysis by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). The Annual Report 2019 on Public Sector Energy Efficiency Performance shows that by the end 2018 collectively the public sector was 27% more energy efficient and on course to achieve its 33% energy efficiency target by the end of 2020.
This is the second consecutive year of marked improved performance, following the introduction of the Public Sector Energy Efficiency Strategy in 2017.
Between them the 345 public bodies and 2,678 schools who reported on their energy performance for 2018 achieved an aggregate improvement in efficiency increasing to 27%, up from 24% the previous year. For 2018, this delivers a further €246 million in avoided energy spend and 761,000 tonnes of avoided CO2 emissions.
Announcing the publication of the report today, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD, said:
"The public sector must lead by example in delivering on our climate commitments. This report gives us an important insight. The increase of a further three percentage points across the board is to be welcomed and will help ensure we reach our 33% energy efficiency target by 2020. However, the variation across the board is cause for concern - 162 public bodies delivered more than 30% energy efficiency over the period but 49 either deteriorated or improved by less than 10%. The Climate Action Plan target of 50% efficiency by 2030 must now be regarded as a minimum in the context of enhanced climate ambition and the actions required to deliver on that ambition."
William Walsh, CEO of SEAI said:
"The SEAI public sector programme supports public bodies to achieve necessary changes in their energy behaviour towards achieving national targets. We provide support ranging from training, advice and mentoring to significant capital grants towards large scale investments. If public bodies wish to lead by example and show the ambition required to achieve our goals, they can be assured of committed and expert resources being made available to them by SEAI. This report, and the continued progress demonstrated, is testimony to the ongoing success of these interventions."
A full copy of Annual Report 2019 on Public Sector Energy Efficiency Performance is available at www.seai.ie
SEAI is Ireland's national energy authority investing in, and delivering, appropriate, effective and sustainable solutions to help Ireland's transition to a clean energy future. We work with Government, homeowners, businesses and communities to achieve this, through expertise, funding, educational programmes, policy advice, research and the development of new technologies.
SEAI is funded by the Government of Ireland through the Department of Communications Climate Action and Environment
About the Annual Report 2019 on Public Sector Energy Efficiency Performance
This is the sixth annual report on the energy efficiency performance of public bodies in Ireland. It is set in the context of Ireland's EU and national commitments and wider climate change goals, whereby a target of 33% energy efficiency improvement is to be achieved by all Irish public bodies (as defined in SI 426 of 2014) by end 2020.
Public bodies are required to report annual energy efficiency data to the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) which manages the reporting process on behalf of the Department of
Communications, Climate Action and Environment (DCCAE). Approximately 97% of all public bodies are now using the online national energy monitoring and reporting system established by SEAI and DCCAE, as are most schools. The monitoring and reporting system provide an important record of how the public sector performed in 2018.
A selection of the 4,036 projects reported to SEAI in 2018:
Maynooth University has improved energy efficiency by 34% since 2009 through the implementation of energy efficient practices, plant upgrades, LED light replacements and enhanced building system design. The university achieved ISO 50001 energy management accreditation in 2018. Raising energy awareness has helped to instil a culture of conservation and sustainability among the campus community. The university also provides a series of electric vehicle
charging points to promote electric vehicle use among staff and students. Maynooth University's ambition and integrated approach continues to achieve energy savings and improved resource efficiency.
Central Statistics Office - In 2018, two energy saving projects were completed in the CSO in
Mahon, Cork. Gas heating boilers were replaced with four cascade boilers and area zoning
controls were also fitted, providing greater control over the heating system. A second project
involved a full retrofit of internal light fittings, replacing existing fluorescent fixtures with LEDs
and occupancy-based controls, as well as daylight harvesting. A year on from project completion, gas
consumption has reduced by 171,100 kWh (€3,600) with electricity savings of 125,700 kWh (€21,400)
HSE - Through the HSE's East Region Energy Bureau and a newly formed energy management team, St Ita's in Portrane saved €95,000 cutting over 900,000 kWh of energy usage from their bill. This resulted in a carbon emissions reduction of 220 tonnes per annum and a simple payback period of 3.1 years based on an investment of €100,000. Projects included upgrading all heating pumps on site to newer more efficient models and installing LED lighting. The money saved is being invested in the service and is funding environmental projects to benefit clients and staff.