Roscommon County Council is aware of its responsibilities and obligations as a public body in the context of Ireland’s EU and national commitments and wider Climate Action Plan goals in achieving a 33% energy efficiency improvement by 2020 relative to 2009 energy usage. The use of renewable technologies is seen as a key element in striving for this energy efficiency target. Roscommon Town Fire Station was chosen for the installation of solar PV panels based on a reasonably consistent year-round usage, i.e., no major summer/winter differences. Total electricity consumption per annum was approximately 38,000kW. (Figures 1 and 2).
A 6kW array was recommended and the building allowed a southwest aspect to the installation of the PV panels on the existing roof. Projected savings per annum of 5,100kW net consumption and €1,020 (excl. VAT) were expected for this measure with a capital cost of €7,700 (excl. VAT), taking account of SEAI Better Energy Community Scheme funding. This measure was undertaken in conjunction with other energy improvement works such as retrofitting internal LED lighting and installing a building management system on the heating system.
Figure 1: Aerial view of solar PV panels, Roscommon Town Fire Station.
Figure 2: Solar PV panels on Roscommon Town Fire Station.
Benefits of Solution
Roscommon County Council recently prepared a draft Climate Change Adaptation Strategy 2019–2024. These measures, along with subsequent actions carried out on other buildings, are cited as
examples of the role being undertaken by Roscommon County Council in decreasing the organisation’s dependency on fossil fuels.
It is hoped that these examples would influence other organisations and residents of County Roscommon to pursue similar innovative activities.
This measure, in conjunction with other energy improvement works, has resulted in an overall saving per annum of €1,800 (excl. VAT), with consequent reductions in electricity consumption and CO2 emissions.