Sixteen-year-old shows how to green a town

11 Sep 2009

A 16-year-old has succeeded in reducing the carbon footprint of his hometown by 33pc in just four years.

Ballina, Co. Tipperary student Eamonn Hayes, along with his school mates, managed to reduce the average energy use in his community by 33pc.

The 16-year-old will tell his story at an international conference that will be held in Dublin Castle on 14 September and will take place over five days.

Hayes will explain how – through An Taisce’s Green Schools Initiative – his community took part in an energy awareness day, whereby all power was switched off to encourage better awareness of efficient energy usage.

More than 300 delegates representing heritage trusts from around the globe will attend the conference. It is expected that a declaration will be passed by the conference, asking world leaders to place the protection of heritage sites at the heart of their deliberations at the forthcoming UN Conference on Climate Change in Copenhagen.

Also addressing the opening of the conference will be Simon Molesworth, president of the International National Trusts Organisation, who will assert the importance of protecting heritage sites around the world; Mary Robinson, who will address the issue of climate change and human rights, and Prof John Sweeney, honorary president of An Taisce, who will set out priorities for Copenhagen.

Photo: Turning off lights that aren’t in use is one way to conserve energy.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years