Ireland Should Diversify the Materials Used to Produce Energy and Heat

Ireland should increase and diversify the variety of natural materials it uses to produce energy and heat, according to a new report by the Committee on Environment, Transport, Culture and the Gaeltacht. Special consideration should be given to organic waste such as tree cuttings and trimmings from forests and farm slurry, according the report which was written by Committee members Timmy Dooley TD and Senator Cait Keane.

The report is based on their observations from attending the 11th Interparliamentary Meeting on Renewable Energy Sources and Energy Efficiency in Sweden. Among the report’s other recommendations are:

* Any carbon taxes introduced in Ireland should be differentiated on the basis of the quantity of carbon in the material being taxed;

* Any such taxes should, as Sweden does, be used to shift some of the tax burden from direct income taxation on working people on low incomes;

* Buildings, new and old, should be built and maintained in a way that minimises their energy consumption;

* The Public Sector should lead by purchasing and maintaining its buildings in accordance with this principle;

* Mandatory building renovations should be considered where these will create definite and noticeable savings and improvements;

* All incinerator and energy producing sites should be designed to utilise both the heat and energy they produce to the fullest extent by connecting them with domestic, commercial or industrial users of heat and energy.

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