Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council’s innovative energy retrofit project in the Beaufort housing development in Glasthule has received gold and silver awards at this year’s All-Ireland Sustainability Awards.

Councillor Denis O’Callaghan, Cathaoirleach of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said:
“I am very pleased to see the fantastic work of our Housing Department being recognised with these two All-Ireland Sustainability Awards. Projects like this are particularly pleasing to me as they ensure our tenants have warmer homes, lower energy bills and an improved quality of life.”

The Gold award was received in the ‘Energy Initiative / Project of the Year’ category that aims to showcase examples of best practice within proactive energy management that will enable a more sustainable future energy system for all.

The Silver award was received in the ‘Housing / Building Initiative of the Year’ category that aims to showcase the most innovative and inspiring green building, infrastructure and architectural projects developed over the past 24 months.

Frank Curran, Chief Executive of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said:
“I am proud to see Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council continue to lead by example with this innovative, climate friendly project. By proactively engaging with the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage we have been able to install the first district heating system funded under the national Energy Efficiency Retrofitting Programme for social housing.”

The Beaufort project was a substantial part of the Council’s Energy Efficiency Retrofit Programme for 2022. Working with SSE Airtricity, the Council undertook a complete retrofit of the 58 designated older persons apartments in Beaufort with the completed works including external insulation, new doors and windows, solar panels, heating system upgrades and attic insulation.

The significant innovation in this project was installation of an intricate, cascading district heating system that ensures all 58 apartments are heated by just eight 14kW Ecodan heat pumps. With the heat pumps installed in two parallel banks of four, greater efficiency is achieved in low heat demand times as each series of heat pumps can be modulated down to have just one heat pump operating with a minimum output of 3kW per bank and a total minimum load output of 6kW for the entire development.

As part of the wider energy retrofitting works in the development, the system contributed to:

  • An increase in the average BER ratings for the apartments from an E1, to an A3 rating
  • A reduction in calculated energy usage of approximately 80% on the pre-energy usage in the development
  • Annual energy savings achieved per apartment of 7,998 Kwh with a total saving of 463,884 Kwh per year

Present at the awards ceremony was Stuart Hobbs, Director of SSE Airtricity Energy Services Ireland. Speaking about the awards, Stuart said:
“SSE Airtricity are delighted to have been able to partner with Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council on this project and their wider Energy Efficiency Retrofitting Programme for social housing. I believe this project is a great example of how the public and private sector can work together to deliver innovative projects that make a real difference to people’s lives.”

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