The Sustainable Energy Communities (SEC) Programme is a nationwide initiative which aims to support Ireland’s transition to a more energy efficient, sustainable future. CLDC continues to grow the SEC programme across Co. Clare. We now have 45 communities registered (!!) on the programme, which consists of three stages – Learn, Plan and Do. The idea is to support and fund communities to take climate action at local level, and in particular to reduce energy use.
A Sustainable Energy Community is any group of people who come together to improve how energy is used for the benefit of their community. They look at how we can use energy in a sustainable, holistic way. A SEC can include a range of different energy users in the community such as homeowners, sports clubs, community centres, local businesses and churches. In this way, a SEC connects sustainable energy, local economic development and public wellbeing. Communities are provided with mentoring and technical support at every stage, so there is no need for communities to have any prior energy knowledge or experience.
Lorraine Power is the CLDC Community Energy Mentor for County Clare and would love to hear from communities interested in joining the growing network. Lorraine will guide groups through the 3 steps of ‘Learn, Plan and Do’. (See contact info blow.)
Registering as an Sustainable Energy Community is a quick and easy process on the SEAI website. Once you register, Lorraine will be in touch to offer support and guidance. The main priority is that the group gets community buy-in.
Once established, an SEC group can apply for 100% funding for a consultant to develop an Energy Master Plan (EMP). The funding ranges from €10k to €20k depending on population size/energy spend. The Plan includes a baseline report of the community’s energy usage, a number of community energy audits and a recommended list of actions for community energy projects. Five communities across Clare have already completed Energy Master Plans and are looking at identifying suitable projects and funding sources as part of their ‘Do’ phase. Mentoring support is provided through all stages.
Lorraine is available to meet with and guide groups in setting up a Sustainable Energy Community and applying for SEAI funding, so please get in touch if your community is interested. In-person and online information sessions are organised on a regular basis. To register your community as an SEC or for more information visit Sustainable Energy Communities | SEAI
It is great to see communities coming together to reap the benefits of energy efficiency, cleaner air and greater energy independence. Communities working together will be central to us meeting our net zero emissions targets by 2050.
FREE HOME ENERGY SAVING COURSE for communities! Running over the winter months, this course will help householders to understand their home energy use and offer tips to reduce consumption and be more energy efficient. The course includes a mix of in-person and online sessions and people are welcome to join any or all of the sessions.
In person launch events:
-Sat Oct 28th – Lisdoonvarna Pavillion 1Oam to 2pm
-Tues November 7th – Scarriff GAA club 7.15pm to 9.15pm
-Wed November 8th – Kilrush Golf Club 7.30pm to 9.30pm
The online sessions will commence on Wednesday 15th November and run from 7.30 to 9.30pm. The course is facilitated by AstoECO on behalf of CLDC.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
Ballyhoura Development CLG coordinates the SEC Programme in the Mid and South West, in partnership with key partners in Co Cork, Co Kerry, Co Clare, Co Tipperary and Co Limerick, supported by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). We have set up a useful regional webpage that contains all you need to know about setting up a Sustainable Energy Community in your area. Click on the link for details.