If you’re applying for planning permission to build in Cappagh, North Ballymun or Northwest Balbriggan, 30% of your heating must come from renewable energy, and your heating must be less than 50Kwh/m2 per annum—roughly twice the standard of most new homes.
In many ways local authorities have become some of Ireland’s most progressive developers. Jason Walsh visited Ardee, County Louth to look at the latest in a long line of new civic offices that are redefining local government in sustainable terms.
A marked lack of adequate central government action to promote sustainable house building in Ireland has been recently counteracted by planning authorities such as Fingal County Council taking action into their own hands, and setting standards geared to protect their constituents in an oil and gas scarce future. However, as sustainable building consultant Will Woodrow discovered from surveying planning authorities around the country, local government willingness is not always met with a full grasp of the issues needed to make sustainable housing happen.
A new public park on the northside of Dublin combines wind power and sustainable water management with environmentally sound materials and strategies to boost biodiversity, making it a standard-bearer in urban design. Lenny Antonelli visited the site