Dublin City on track to reach 20pc renewable energy 2020 target – report

4 Apr 2014

The O'Connell Bridge in Dublin city centre

Dublin City Council has released its Sustainability Report 2013 and claims it expects to reach its 2020 renewable energy usage target of 20pc.

Covering a variety of topics, including climate and energy, biodiversity and resource management, the release of this report suggests encouraging signs for the Irish capital’s clean-tech future.

According to the report, residential and commercial buildings have the the greatest opportunity for reducing carbon emissions and, as of 2013, accounted for more than half of all CO2 emissions in the city. Energy usage could be reduced by 10pc via extra insulation, boiler replacement, and the introduction of compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) bulbs.

The biggest news, however, is that the authors of the report say the city is on track to meet its 20pc renewable-energy target under the European Union’s 2020 plan, but further efforts will be needed between 2015 and 2020.

“The city council is leading by example through its commitment to reducing its own energy consumption by 33pc by 2020,” the report says, citing a number of long-term investments in infrastructure, towards meeting the long-term target of 80pc reduction in greenhouse gases by 2050.

The council’s energy usage was found to have decreased in terms of MWh/capita by about 18pc from 2006-2011, and it has been ranked 18th out of 30 cities under the energy category in the Siemens Green City Index in 2009.

One of the authors of the report, Mark Bennett, Dublin City Council’ green business officer, said there were a number of new factors taken into consideration compared with the previous two years.

“In 2013, we have reported against eight themes and have integrated high-level indicators into a single report,” Bennett said.

“There continue to be issues of indicator suitability and data availability and we would welcome feedback on how to improve on this. Additionally, we hope to expand our use of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) index. The index helps to standardise reports so that they become comparable between organisations.”

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic