Renewable energy project introduced to 20 Dublin schools

by Rachel Darcy

A new renewable energy project intended to help schools power classrooms with energy generated through solar panels has been launched by SSE Airtricity and Microsoft Ireland.

The project will see an investment of close to €1 million into schools across the country, with several of the schools benefitting based in Dublin. SEE Airtricity and Microsoft will install and manage the internet-connected solar panels.

Schools in Clondalkin, Sandyford, Lucan, Monkstown, Kilternan, Ballinteer, Mount Merrion, Adamstown and Dundrum will all benefit from the scheme. A key aspect of the new project is to teach students of these schools about how they can play a role in combatting climate change.

Digital screens have been set up in all 27 schools to enable the students to track energy use in real time and see the impact of the energy efficiency upgrades in their school.

Students from the schools will participate in a programme designed to educate and inform young people about the challenges posed by climate change and the role technology can play in creating more sustainable communities across Ireland.

Cathriona Hallahan, Managing Director at Microsoft Ireland said: “We are delighted therefore to partner with SSE Airtricity on this important project.

“With an investment of close to one million euro from the Microsoft Sustainability Fund, not only will 27 schools now power their classrooms using energy generated from their own rooftops, reducing their carbon footprint and costs, we will also look to prove the viability of distributed energy generation by aggregating and analysing real-time data on energy generated by the solar panels.

“Collectively we can take a step in the right direction and harness the power of innovative technology to help generate renewable energy and go some way towards offsetting carbon emissions.

“Through the installation of solar panels and the new data-driven insights from Microsoft’s Azure cloud, we look forward to enabling sustainable practices inside and outside the school gate. Working together, we hope to open up the energy saving and carbon reduction potential of rooftop solar across Ireland and perhaps one day across the world.”

Klair Neenan, Managing Director of SSE Airtricity said: “Providing renewable energy solutions is in our DNA and we are delighted to partner with Microsoft Ireland on a project that will deliver real, tangible benefits for these 27 schools and their communities, supporting them on their decarbonisation journey.

“We are focused on delivering initiatives that will make a real difference in helping Ireland move a step closer to achieving our ambitious 2030 climate targets, while providing practical energy solutions that will support communities, businesses and policymakers on the collective path to net zero.

“This new collaborative project will allow students throughout Ireland to see first-hand how sustainability and renewable energy can combine to help fight climate change while also benefitting their school and community on a daily basis.”

Schools to benefit from the project in Dublin include:

  • Adamstown Castle Educate Together
  • Adamstown Community College
  • Coláiste Chilliain, Clondalkin
  • Coláiste Cois Life
  • Gaelscoil Shliabh Rua, Sandyford
  • Griffeen Valley ETNS, Lucan
  • Kishoge Community College, Lucan
  • Lucan East Educate Together National School
  • Monkstown Educate Together
  • Oatlands College, Mount Merrion
  • Our Lady of the Wayside NS, Kilternan
  • Our Lady’s Boys National School, Ballinteer
  • Rosemount School, Sandyford
  • Scoil Caoimhin Naofa, Mount Merrion
  • Scoil San Treasa, Mount Merrion
  • St John the Evangelist NS, Adamstown
  • St Mary’s National School, Sandyford
  • St Olaf’s National School, Dundrum
  • St Patricks Boys NS, Blackrock
  • St. Kevin’s Community College, Clondalkin.

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