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South Dublin County Council's Innovative Tallaght District Heating Scheme Receives €4.5 Million Funding Under Government's Climate Action Fund

South Dublin County Council's Innovative Tallaght District Heating Scheme Receives €4.5 Million Funding Under Government's Climate Action Fund

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The Taoiseach, Mr Leo Varadkar T.D., the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Mr Richard Bruton T.D. and the Minister for Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform Mr Paschal Donohoe T.D. today (Wednesday the 28th of November 2018) announced that South Dublin County Council's innovative Tallaght District Heating Scheme is one of seven major climate change projects to receive funding through under the Government's new Climate Action Fund.

The Climate Action Fund received 97 applications by the October 1st deadline for submissions, with South Dublin County Council chosen as one of seven successful applications for funding. The call was open to larger scale projects – seeking grant funding €1 million or more – that are scheduled to commence development in 2019 or 2020. The Tallaght District Heating Scheme, which is estimated to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the South Dublin County area by nearly 1,900 tonnes per year, will use excess heat from the new data centre in Tallaght to provide low carbon heat to public sector, residential and commercial customers. 

The objective of the scheme is to decrease greenhouse gas emissions associated with the use of fossil fuels for heating in the area in order to contribute to national level renewable energy, energy efficiency and CO2 targets and establish Tallaght as a leader in innovation in the area of climate change. 

The Tallaght District Heating Scheme delivers a high level of innovation in the heating sector, with the Amazon data centre to be used to supply waste heat to heat nearby buildings, and will be the only such system in Ireland and the UK.  This ability to utilise indigenous heat sources helps to reduce Ireland’s dependence on imported fossil fuels and ensure security of supply for customers into the future. This system also has the potential to accelerate a new low-carbon heating sector in Ireland, generating long-term employment in the operation and maintenance of the scheme over its lifetime, expected to be in excess of 50 years, as well as significant specialised employment during the network's construction.

The first phase of the project will connect existing local authority buildings, new local authority buildings, a new private sector high-density residential and commercial development to a local heat network.

The existing South Dublin County Council buildings connecting to the district heating scheme are the County Hall offices, county library, and the Civic Theatre and Rua Red buildings, totalling 27,000 m2 heated floor area. The new Council buildings will include a 4,000 m2 innovation centre with flexible office space and demonstration kitchen area, and a new affordable housing development of 200 one and two bedroom units, due for completion by the third quarter of 2021.

The new private residential development at Belgard Gardens will comprise of 1,423 apartment units, 339 student units, and 12,250 m2 of commercial space. This development is to be phased; with works planned to begin on the student units in 2019. The full development is planned to be complete in 2023.

The scheme is a collaboration between the Council and Codema and is partly funded by the European Union's HeatNet NWE programme, a multi-million euro fund for schemes that reduce CO2 emissions in Europe's north-west, by €4.5 million from the Project Ireland 2040 Climate Action Fund and through direct funding from South Dublin County Council.

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