Leading world experts gather in DIT to discuss future energy sources

Dublin 25 April 2006: As fuel costs rise, the most topical conference taking place in Dublin this week is the second international conference on "Renewable Energy in Maritime Island Climates". Researchers, industry specialists and policy makers, from Europe, Japan and New Zealand gathered in DIT Bolton Street to consider developments across a wide spectrum of technologies, from energy-efficient building design to new types of energy generation - all geared to developing secure energy sources for the future.

The opening speaker at the conference was Professor Brian Norton, President of DIT and solar energy specialist. According to Professor Norton, "This conference brings together research that is taking place in parts of the world that share similar natural environments. Islands - whether it's Japan, New Zealand or Ireland - have similar energy issues, and potentially can find common solutions. We may not have the oil or coal resources of other countries on the continent of Europe, or even in Britain, but we do have more wind and the sea can also be a huge energy source. Indeed, contrary to popular belief, there is also immense potential for solar energy in Ireland. In addition, these are all distributed resources that can sustain small rural populations as well as large urban centres."

Unless Ireland takes significant steps, by 2010 greenhouse gas emissions here will have increased by 37% in twenty years. The main culprit in this is carbon dioxide, mainly arising from the burning of fossil fuel in transport, heating and electricity generation. For example, half of all energy is used in providing heat and light in our buildings. This can be reduced by generating energy from renewable sources, reducing dependence on imported fuel sources, bringing about diversity and security of supply, and helping to improve the environment.

Topics covered during the conference sessions included the application of renewable energy technologies such as:

  • wind
  • biomass
  • solar thermal and photovoltaics
  • hydro, wave and tidal power
  • heating and cooling applications
  • energy conscious building design and material
  • economics, policy and integration

Professor Norton said the organisers were delighted to welcome more than 100 participants to the Dublin conference. "There is considerable research taking place here in Ireland and in fact we are at the forefront in many aspects of energy-related technology, and can be world leaders in this field. The range of speakers at the conference reflects this, but also includes leading researchers from New Zealand, Japan and elsewhere who can give great insight into issues that are absolutely pertinent to our situation here."

REMIC 2 was organised by UK ISES, the UK section of the International Solar Energy Society in association with the Solar Energy Group, and Dublin Institute of Technology's FOCAS Institute and School of Physics, and the Centre for Sustainable Technologies, School of Built Environment at the University of Ulster.

To download the conference programme please click here.

For more information please contact:

Ms Sinead Coyne
Public Relations Officer
Dublin Institute of Technology
t. +353 1 402 7130
e. sinead.coyne@dit.ie
m. 087 947 7090

Or

Dr. Sarah Gallagher
Dublin Institute of Technology
t. +353 1 402 7961
e. sarah.gallagher@dit.ie

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