Policy

The Lay of the land

0309-layofthelandTITLE.jpg
The unprecedented development seen in Ireland in the Celtic Tiger years was fueled by the availability of cheap, abundant fossil energy. As the boom ends, the state is attempting to boost the economy with investment in larger than ever infrastructural projects which will not benefit many of the tax payers who are funding them, and crucially don’t recognize the extent to which peak oil production will affect their viability, as Richard Douthwaite reveals.

Pay as you save

Pay as you save
In an ideal world every occupied building in Ireland would be energy upgraded to the highest standard, tapping into numerous benefits for the building occupant, the construction industry and society as a whole. Construct Ireland is calling for the introduction of pay as you save, a repayment model which offers the potential of making significant energy upgrade investments achievable in the vast majority of Irish buildings, as Jeff Colley reveals.

Greening public procurement

Greening public procurement
Ireland has been waiting for a green procurement plan in the public sector for two years. Jason Walsh looks at what the plan should include and why it is needed, now more than ever, and with sustainable building at its core.

Thinking Caps

O310-ThinkingCapsTITLE.jpg
Much of the debate on reducing international carbon emissions has focused on the extra cost of making the necessary cuts to slow the onset of climate change. According to Richard Douthwaite, the Irish Government is considering introducing Cap and Share, a system which would actually earn ordinary Irish people money for reducing emissions.

Are you being served?

Home-Energy-Upgrade
A sustainable energy project in north Tipperary has the potential to create a pioneering green community – buildings are getting energy makeovers, grants are available for renewables and the ecovillage at Cloughjordan is under construction. But getting householders in the area to go green is still proving a hard sell, as Lenny Antonelli reports

Saving grace

0406-Saving-Grace-SMALL.jpg
The government recently announced a fund of e100 million for energy upgrading Irish houses in 2009, to be divided equally between low income and middle income earners. Focusing on the latter, Jason Walsh looks at the details of the Home Energy Saving scheme and speaks to key figures in the industry to get their views on the ingredients needed to make the scheme a success

EU energy commissioner

0301-piebalgstitle.jpg
Jeff Colley spoke to Commissioner Piebalgs about key issues affecting Ireland’s energy future  and the importance of local initiatives such as Fingal County Council’s groundbreaking introduction of sustainable building requirements

Private joke

Public private partnership schemes have come to dominate many aspects of Irish infrastructural development, from toll roads to urban regeneration schemes
Public private partnership schemes have come to dominate many aspects of Irish infrastructural development, from toll roads to urban regeneration schemes. Jason Walsh asks if they amount to privatisation by stealth and whether they come at too high a social and environmental cost.

Incentive innovation

Government grants aim to stimulate A2-rated housing
Energy Minister Eamon Ryan recently announced a e9 million fund to be administered by SEI for sustainable housing including, crucially, micro-generation of renewable electricity. Jason Walsh talked to SEI and industry figures to examine the scheme’s future.

Green power

Eamonn Ryan and John Gormley
Newly elected Green Party Ministers John Gormley & Eamon Ryan talk to Construct Ireland about their vision for a sustainable future.

Marketplace + companies featured in this article

Xtratherm

As the leading Irish thermal insulation provider, Xtratherm offers the construction industry with a range of innovative complete solutions

Ecological Building Systems

Our ethos at Ecological Building Systems is to achieve 'Better Building' by adopting a 'Fabric First' approach to design.