Tell us about your organisation?
Donegal County Council (DCC) is responsible for a range of services in Ireland North West, including Planning, Building Control, Social Housing, Roads, Waste Control, Recycling & Environment. The council has a mission to lead the sustainable development and growth of the County and energy has cross-cutting input across all functions. Donegal County Council were one of the first local authorities in Europe to achieve ISO 50001 accreditation for its Energy Management System and sees itself as having an exemplar role in the region in relation to the promotion of good energy practices, including the promotion and uptake of renewable energy sources.
Give us an overview of your region?
County Donegal is situated in the North West of Ireland. Our border with Northern Ireland is 140km while our border with the rest of the Island of Ireland is 9km. In 2016, 159,192 persons called Donegal their home, an increase of 29,198 over the last 20 years.
Who are you working with in your organisation and region on the SMARTrenew project?
Throughout the SMARTrenew project, Donegal County Council will be working internally within our organisation with staff from our Environment Office, Climate Action Steering Group and members of our Energy Management Team. Externally, Donegal County Council will be working with stakeholders such as community groups, private sector businesses and local academics.
Why is renewable energy important to your region and what can it gain from SMARTrenew pilots?
Renewable energy in our region is important as there are existing and future challenges surrounding the delivery of national climate action policy and national energy reduction policy. In our region, there is limited awareness regarding energy policy at both national and EU level. There is also limited awareness surrounding renewable energy sources and energy storage techniques. Through SMARTrenew, our region can gain from transnational knowledge transfer, where effective and successful renewable technologies have been implemented.
What would you like to achieve under SMARTrenew?
Through SMARTrenew, Donegal County Council would like to achieve improved international and regional relationships and collaboration with the various project partners in the areas of renewable technologies and smart energy storage. Through SMARTrenew our organisation would like to implement an energy upgrade project to Milford Public Services Centre and Community Library, incorporating a mix of renewable energy sources and smart energy technology.