Construction sector targeted with new green-tech FÁS courses

19 May 2009

FÁS is introducing new training programmes in the green-tech sphere for those in the construction sector who have lost their jobs and want to acquire new knowledge.

The new FÁS courses will be aimed at helping those in construction convert or upgrade their skills to take advantage of the new wave of green and clean-tech opportunities coming on-stream in Ireland.

Making the announcement today, the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan TD, said the new courses would help those who have lost their jobs increase their skill sets to capitalise on opportunities in new emerging growth areas within the construction sector.

“These include the installation of energy-efficient and renewable technologies, together with compliance and energy rating work,” she said. 

The new courses on offer through FÁS will include gas safety and installation courses, and sustainable energy courses, which will cover areas such as solar thermal, heat-pump and bio-mass boiler installing, equipping plumbers, electricians, fitters and construction workers with the skills to design, install and commission domestic solar hot-water heating, bio-mass and heat-pump systems.

Other courses will include the insulation technologies and techniques, the Building Energy Rating course, and the smart/intelligent building systems courses – the latter will provide qualified electricians or suitably qualified applicants with the skills, knowledge and competence to install, configure and test an intelligent building control system using KNX/EIB technology.

The Tánaiste said plans were well advanced for additional courses to come on-stream later this year, which will further expand this initial offering of green and clean-tech construction courses.

For example, the micro-electricity generation wind turbine and photovoltaic courses are currently being developed in close co-operation with Sustainable Energy Ireland.

In addition, the passive house building course will be aimed at construction workers, equipping them the knowledge and use of technology associated with the passive house construction method/standard.

The Skillnets Training Networks Programme is also running relevant training courses in knowledge areas such as BER, low-carbon energy assessment, air-permeability training, energy savings and water hygiene.

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By Carmel Doyle