EirGrid roadshows hear how Laois & Kilkenny can benefit from energy transition

Future-proofing the electricity grid around Kilkenny & Laois can attract industry and help achieve Ireland’s climate action ambitions.

This was the message delivered to those who gathered at our recent EirGrid Energy Citizens Roadshow events at The River Court Hotel in Kilkenny, and The Midlands Park Hotel in Portlaoise.

EirGrid, the operator and developer of the electricity grid, held our latest information evenings to discuss the future of energy in the region.

Attendees also heard from SEAI about how to access energy upgrade supports, while ESB Networks explained how smart metering can optimise energy consumption at home.
Proceedings commenced with EirGrid’s Chief Infrastructure Officer, Michael Mahon, illustrating plans to prepare Ireland’s electricity grid to carry an additional 17GW (gigawatts) of renewable electricity by 2030. That target would see resources on the system triple from 2020 levels.

Outlining the need for homes to be more energy efficient, Yvonne Byrne and Emer Conway of SEAI said heating accounts for 80% of home energy, with 30% typically being lost through roofs, as well as a further 30% through walls.

ESB Networks' Gerry Noone told the audience that, with upwards of 1.3 million smart meters installed across the country to date, consumers will now be able to access the information they need in order to make more informed choices about their consumption, and the best tariff option for them.

Following their on-stage presentations, all speakers partook in audience Q&A sessions, moderated by Master of Ceremonies Ciaran Mullooly.

Subject matter ranged from household-based queries to questions centring more broadly on infrastructure projects in the midlands.

Speaking about the roadshow series at large, Sinead Dooley, EirGrid’s Head of Public engagement, said: “There is a clear appetite for information when it comes to energy and plans to strengthen the electricity grid.

“Listening to and engaging with the public has provided invaluable insights as we work to develop critical infrastructure that will not only support greater energy independence, but will help communities to prosper and grow.”

Kilkenny's 12-time All-Ireland winner Angela Downey [centre left] was among the locals who attended EirGrid's latest Energy Citizens Roadshow Event at The River Court Hotel. L-R: Sinead Dooley [EirGrid], Angela Downey, Ciaran Mullooly [MC] and Noelle O'Driscoll. Credit: Vicky Comerford.

EirGrid's Chief Infrastructure Officer, Michael Mahon, kicked off proceedings in Kilkenny. Credit: Vicky Comerford.

Ryan Keane, JFW Renewables, was among the exhibitors in attendance at the recent EirGrid Energy Citizens Roadshow in Laois. Credit: Aaron Leavy.

Laois locals gathered to hear of EirGrid's plans to develop the electricity grid at the recent Energy Citizens Roadshow.  Credit: Aaron Leavy