Government makes €4m available for renewable energy research

21 Jan 2019

Image: © Jim Ekstrand/

The Government continues its push to make amends for climate inaction with a new €4m scheme for renewable energy technology developers.

Last week, the Government began preparing a climate action plan to be rolled out nationwide in order to rectify its dismal position as one of Europe’s worst performers in changing environmental attitudes.

Now, it has launched the 2019 Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) National Energy Research Development and Demonstration funding programme worth €4m. The programme is designed to fund innovative energy research projects, which will help to drive Ireland’s transition to a clean and secure energy future.

Applications to the programme are open from today (21 January) and will close on 7 March 2019. Applications are open to companies, universities, institutes of technology, publicly funded research institutions, public sector bodies and semi-State bodies based in Ireland.

Evaluation criteria for those applying to the scheme show that 40pc will be based on the project’s excellence and innovation, a further 30pc will be based on relevance and impact, and the remaining 30pc will be determined by the proposal’s quality and efficiency of implementation.

A necessary response

At the launch today, the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton, TD, said: “I am determined to make Ireland a leader in responding to climate change. Putting Ireland’s energy use on a sustainable path is key to realising that ambition.

“We as Government must invest in research to help drive discovery of the new technologies and solutions required for Ireland’s low-carbon energy transition.”

Under the 2019 call, SEAI revealed that it has developed co-funding partnerships with ESB Group, Gas Networks Ireland and the Geological Survey.

Earlier today, Interreg Europe – the EU’s regional development fund for environmental solutions – announced a new €12.8m project to upscale renewable ocean energy projects. Called Ocean Demo, the scheme provides funding for developers of marine renewable technologies to test their products or services in real sea environments, allowing them to move closer to market by demonstrating their technologies at full commercial scale.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic