Last November I went on a research trip to Austria. The trip included a number of visits to factories from the Renewable Energy Sector and also to buildings with Passive House characteristics.
Austria is one of the world’s leaders in renewable energy and sustainability. And I was very well impressed with all the places we visited and the way Austria is developing their sustainability strategy.
Austria generates 67% of its electricity from renewable sources. Ireland with its 14% is still a long way to go to catch this performance. That is why we can learn so much from the Austrian model.
The research trip included the visit to the following:
- Power Tower (Passive House building)
- SOLution Solartechnik (solar panels)
- Fronius (solar inverters, battery charging systems)
- Guntamatic (biomass boilers)
- Neura (heat pumps)
- Biomass Research Centre Bioenergy 2020+
- Billa supermarket (Green Building Award)
- Smart City Project Klosterneuburg
- Energy Base (Passive house offices)
During 2012 I will try to post more details and photos of this trip. Watch this space!
Energy will continue to be a priority for the European Commission going forward and we all need to work together in order to be more energy efficient. Ireland has been progressing quite well and its capacity to deliver renewable electricity has continued to grow by an average of more than 150 MW per year.
The target for Ireland in the European Renewable Energy Directive (2009/28/EC) is a 16% share of renewable energy in gross final consumption by 2020. New and more strict regulations have been introduced in order to meet this target.
To learn more about Energy in Ireland click here to download the 2011 Report “Energy in Ireland 1990 – 2010” published by SEAI.