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Dublin: 8 °C Thursday 21 November, 2019
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Dingle residents share in €350,000 of future ESB technologies

The ESB established the ‘Dingle Project’ to pinpoint how Ireland’s electricity will be distributed in the future.

The Dingle Peninsula
The Dingle Peninsula
Image: DPA/PA Images

FIVE HOMES AND businesses on the Dingle Peninsula in Co Kerry will form part of the ESB’s first major sustainable technology project. 

The utility’s ‘Dingle Project’ is a three-year €5 million initiative which aims to pilot new ways of providing electricity and energy across the region. 

The scheme was established to pinpoint how Ireland’s electricity will be distributed into the future. 

As part of improvements to the peninsula’s electricity network, five homes and businesses will share €350,000 worth of sustainable technologies between them. 

“Ultimately, where we’re going as a country, electricity and energy are becoming cleaner all the time,” ESB spokesperson Paul Hand said. 

Those chosen by the ESB in the local community include a business which set up in 1875 as well as more recent residential builds. 

Technologies due to be installed include solar panels, battery management systems and electric vehicles chargers.

It’s understood the project will include deep retrofits to facilitate the installation of ultra-efficient air source heat pumps, too. 

“Once we can get these technologies and the wider grid working well together with fewer outages than we have now,” says Hand, “then we’ll look at the rest of the country.”

There is a “two-prong” approach to the ‘Dingle Project’, the ESB said. 

First, there is tackling network issues – installing sustainable technologies over three years across the peninsula. 

Then, there is community engagement – persuading locals to move towards new energy sources. 

“These five [homes and businesses] will closely monitor their electricity usage as these devices are installed. It’s to give them a sense of the future,” says Hand. 

Solar Energy Plant in Germany Solar Panels Source: DPA/PA Images

The Dingle peninsula is essentially a litmus test for the rest of the country.

It provides a good sample size. There’s are nearly 4000 homes across the peninsula and a mixture of urban and rural with electricity usage rising and falling with the seasons. 

“It’s also exposed to the Atlantic Ocean and Atlantic storms,” Hand says. 

That means occasional blackouts which can be countered through new technologies. 

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