Climate crisis plans never as relevant — Galway Energy Summit to hear tomorrow

Delegates from more than 20 countries attending the second Galway Energy Summit which is being held in the city tomorrow (Friday ) will hear that discussions on carbon emissions and the climate crisis were never as necessary as they are now.

With the revelation this week that July was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth, the discussions at the summit are timely and attendees will be given an update on Ireland’s ambitious goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.

Gary O’Sullivan, President ASHRAE Ireland said told the Advertiser last evening that the importance of cross industry collaboration is more important now to tackle the climate crisis.

“We are delighted to bring this event to Galway where we will welcome delegates from over 20 different countries to participate in these discussions as part of our annual regional conference.

“We believe that change is possible but only if we all work together with a single goal to ensure a future for the younger generations,” he added.

Conor Deane, Galway Energy Summit said that the Galway Energy Summit was founded in 2018 and run by a group of passionate students from the University of Galway Energy Society.

“Our past events, ‘The Future of Energy in Ireland’ in 2018 and ‘Changing for our Climate’ in 2019, were met with overwhelming success, showcasing the growing importance of sustainable energy practices in Ireland.

“Unfortunately, due to the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was put on hold and hasn’t taken place since. This year, we are incredibly grateful to be participating in ASHRAE Ireland’s region 14 CRC. The theme for this year’s summit is ‘Achieving Net Zero,’ which aligns perfectly with Ireland’s ambitious goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. The event is timely as the significance of this topic have never been more prevalent,” he added.

“GES23: Achieving Net Zero”, to be held in the Bailey Allen Hall at the University of Galway ASHRAE Region XIV Chapter Regional Conference (CRC ). will bring together individuals and organisations across all industries with the common goal of achieving net zero carbon together.

Given Ireland and Europe’s imminent carbon emission targets this event has never been so relevant, this full day conference has speakers from across industry such as ASHRAE, CIBSE, SEAI, ESB, EIH2, AbbVie, HSE, Bit Power, University of Galway, MKO, UCC, IGBC, CIM, EM3, Codema.

The conference will kick off with an insightful panel discussion titled “The Road to Net Zero: An Outlook”. This engaging session will explore Ireland’s and Europe’s progress towards achieving net zero carbon emissions, providing attendees with up-to-date information on carbon reduction goals and advancements. The panel of speakers includes:

Moderator: Dr Rory Monaghan – Associate Professor of Energy Systems Engineering, University of Galway.

Dr Paul Deane – Senior Lecturer in Clean Energy Futures, UCC.

Catherine Joyce O’Caollai - Policy Manager, Generation Strategy, ESB.

Declan Meally – Director of Business, Public Sector and Transport, SEAI.

Jaap Hogeling – Project Expert - EPB (Energy Performance of Buildings ) Centre.

Ellen Costello – Project Environmental Scientist, MKO.

The second panel discussion, “Net Zero in Industry” will feature prominent national corporations and multinational companies, sharing their decarbonisation strategies and showcasing their implementation at national levels. This session will provide valuable insights into sustainable practices in industry. The panel comprises:

Moderator: Siobhan McHugh – Director Energy and Utilities Consulting Lead - PWC.

David McAuley – Founder & CEO, Bit Power.

Peter Moran – Global Engineering Energy Lead, Abbvie.

Michael Curran– Head of Building Services, Energy and Utilities at University of Galway.

Stephen Daly – Senior Engineer Energy Unit, HSE.

Catherine Sheridan – Head of Strategy, Ryze Hydrogen.

Recognising the significance of embodied carbon and the circular economy, often overlooked in net zero discussions, the third panel discussion, “Switching to a Circular Economy”, will shed light on this critical aspect. With the construction and built environment sector accounting for 37% of Ireland’s carbon emissions, focusing on both operational and embodied carbon becomes imperative. Our esteemed speakers for this panel are:

Moderator - Dr Hywel Davis – Chief Technical Officer, CIBSE.

Rachel Loughrey – Project Support Officer (Circular Economy ), Irish Green Building Council.

Matt Paskin – Marketing & Product Director, Whitecroft Lighting

Rosemarie Mac Sweeney - Project Manager, RKD.

Samuel Boswell - Business Developer, One Click LCA

In the pursuit of net zero, measurement becomes essential for quantifying our progress. The final panel discussion, “Measuring Net Zero”, will address this crucial aspect and explore various measurement methodologies. The panel is as follows:

Moderator - Marisa Higgins, Senior Mechanical Engineer, ARUP. Paul Walsh - Chief Operating Officer, CIMSea?n Sirr - Senior Consultant EM3.Niall O’Leary – Energy Engineer, Codema.

Robert McCarthy - Programme Executive – Business & Industry, SEAI. Andrea Ahern - Net-Zero Technologies Lead, CATAGEN.


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