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Our hugely popular practical Demonstrations are back for 2018! These are hour long sessions involving a briefing led by industry experts, discussions with interested parties combined with practical demonstration. The demos will give you great insight into the specific topic as well as the opportunity to ask questions and see equipment at work.

11.00 – 12.00 Wind

Facilitated by Mike Pearson, Principal Gurteen College

There have been a lot of changes in renewable electricity generation, particularly wind energy in Ireland since Energy in Agriculture 2017. The Commission for the Regulation of Utilities announced new criteria for access to the national grid and the Department of Communications, Climate Action & the Environment recently set out the broad design of a new Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).  But what are the opportunities for farmers? The new scheme will incentivise the introduction of sufficient renewable electricity generation to meet national and EU-wide renewable energy and decarbonisation targets.

The wind demonstration looks at the practical implication of these changes for anyone interested in replacing their current energy supply with wind energy. It also looks at planning, financing, grid connection and the practical aspects of delivering a wind project.

As the diary expansion continues so does the need for more energy. A small-scale wind turbine could be the ideal solution for dairy farmers to lower their energy bills and their carbon foot print.  A leading turbine manufacturer will discuss the appropriate size turbine for farm use, the basics of how they work and the feasibility of this technology.

This engaging demonstration will provide insights from industry leading expert. It will also provide opportunities for questions and shared learning’s from both speakers and attendees. A demonstration most definitely not to be missed.

Participants include:
Mike Pearson – Gurteen College
Sean Ganley, C&F Green Energy
Nuala O’Connell, Tipperary County Council
Rory Mullan – Mullan Grid
Tommy Cooke – IWEA

Mike – Facilitator – Overview of the Gurteen turbine.

Sean Ganley – C&F
• How a turbine works ( the basics) ,
• Cost of a turbine and payback maybe focus on a dairy farm case study ?
• Latest technology developments in turbine manufacture of small scale turbines,
• Required wind speed etc.

Rory Mullan – Mullan Grid
• Connection requirements for a small scale turbine for own use.
• Latest on the upcoming micro generation tariffs
• latest developments in getting a grid connection (group process), the auction process and will it be technology neutral or not? ( not decided yet but he can give his own views and the pros and cons of both). Cost of a connection.

Tommy Cooke – Irish Wind Energy Association
• (IWEA) What’s involved in planning for a wind farm from his own experience.

Nuala O’Connell – Tipperary County Council
• Planning what’s required for micro installations and the bigger turbines
o Environment Impact statement
o Cost of planning
o Noise requirements
o Set back distances
o Planning exemptions for micro scale

12.00 – 13.00 Solar PV including Battery Storage

Facilitated by Paul Kenny, TEA

The Solar PV demonstration will include an overview of the technology and a discussion about quality standards of equipment and the costs and returns of installation of the equipment. The session will focus on farm scale PV for self consumption and focus on the information that would be useful to farmers in maximizing the return on investment and the supports available. Attendees will hear from a range of speakers including a representative of the planning authority, someone to discuss the installation and maintenance of the equipment and how best to use the electricity. The design attributes to maximise yield and performance in addition to the installation of battery storage and residual heat dumps to maximise the use on site will also be discussed as part of the demonstration.


Participants include:
Robert Goss from Solar Electric PV installers
– Give us the hard facts – how much does a kWh of electricity from the sun cost over the 25 year expected life?
– What does that translate to in simple payback.
– What maintenance requirements are there?
– What are the key components of a suitable farm installation?

Sonja Reidy, Senior Planner, Tipperary County Council.
– Can you explain what solar development requires planning/ is exempt.
– What are the characteristics you need to assess to ensure a solar installation is suitable & appropriate

Michael Moore, Eglin Energy, Solar Developer.
– A large number of solar projects have applied for grid connections, will they all get built?
– Will you give a quick overview of what you think will happen in large scale solar over the next 3-5 years.
– We’re now moving into an auction system where the developer and the farmer will win or lose together, what do you feel the farming community can do to maximise their chances of having a successful project?
– Realistically there will be negotiation on costs/ yields etc. between the developer and farmer, and it is a landowner beware situation. Would you have any advice for landowners?

Kieran Tarpey, Entrust ltd.
– We’ve talked about the grid development process to date, what is the current situation on planning permissions – how many farms have full planning permission and how many MW is this?
– Commubnity ownership will be a mandatory requirement for RESS support and potentially for planning in the future, can you outline what form you think this will happen in.
– What restrictions on development should farmers be aware of as part of solar projects on their farms?

Colm Byrne, MCA
– Grid stability is emerging as a key issue ant the government wants to push intermittent renewables up to 75% and beyond. Can you explain what a large battery can do in this process.
– What is DS3 and why is it impacting renewable energy development.
– What do you see as the key trends in the next 3 years in this space.

13.00 – 14.00 Wood Mobilisation

Facilitated by Barry Caslin, Teagasc

Generating and selling heat from biomass does have a viable future, especially given the changes affecting agriculture. Over the next decade, the wood energy market is predicted to grow significantly in response to increasing oil prices, limited access to the gas network, policy targets and measures such as carbon taxes together with the need to create indigenous enterprise and job expansion through the renewable energy sector. Forestry and wood based industries provide a wide range of different fuels including logs, bark, chips, sawdust and pellets.  Agriculture can provide dedicated energy crops as well as by-products in the form of animal manure and straw. Demand from other markets e.g. co-firing, CHP and the blending of coal with biomass which is a major innovative development at Coal Products Limited – CPL. Farmers need to consider whether energy crops are economical and what opportunities exist to supply the Irish energy market. The Sustainable Support for Renewable Heat (SSRH) will be a game changer in terms of creating a demand for biomassfeedstock’s. The wood mobilisation demo will challenge you to explore those opportunities and provide the information to make solid business decisions.

This demonstration will explore:

Demo Participants include:

Marina Conway, Western Forestry Co-op

Michael Somers, Teagasc

Owen Power, Enerpower

Tim Minett, CPL

Ken Worrell, Worrell Harvesting

15.00 – 16.00 Anaerobic Digestion

Facilitated by Tom Short, IFA

The AD demo will approach the development of anaerobic digestion in Ireland from the perspective of security and predictability of energy supply,  coupled with the economic advantages of lower fossil fuel imports and job creation and the ability to meet internationally agreed targets in green house gas emission levels. The requirements in terms of feedstock, land and capital investment and draws comparisons with other jurisdictions will be explored.

If implemented effectively, AD would lead to significant job creation in an evolving farming sector, and would inject much needed youth into the sector.

Main areas include:

Demo Participants include:

Justin Byrne, DAFM

Enda Buckley, Carbery

J.J. Lenehan, Teagasc

David McDonnell, Greengas

Padraic O’Neil, IRBEA

Ian Kilgallon, GNI


Check out the live demos from 2016