Leaders in energy efficiency and renewable energy are being urged to get their entries in on time for this year’s Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) Energy Awards – with the entry deadline looming.

Now in their 16th year, the SEAI Energy Awards recognise and reward excellence in sustainable energy.

Businesses, public bodies and communities who are using smart energy solutions and practices are encouraged to apply and be recognised for their commitment to a cleaner energy future, ahead of the deadline for entries, set at Friday, June 14.

Entries can include any combination of electricity, heat or transport initiatives.

There are eight categories to choose from including: Large Business; Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs); Public Sector; Community; Buildings; Renewable Energy Solutions; Energy Manager or Team; and Research and Innovation, which has a bursary of up to €10,000.

Announcing the launch of the awards, Fergus Sharkey, head of the public and private sector business in SEAI, said:

“The transition to a clean energy future will require leadership from businesses, communities and public bodies.

“As more and more sectors are pushing the boundaries in energy efficiency and renewable energy, I would encourage individuals and organisations to enter the SEAI Energy Awards 2019 and get the deserved recognition for their hard won achievements.”

Last year, entrants to the awards demonstrated savings of €38 million through innovative sustainable energy projects.

The top prize for Energy Manager of the Year went to Mike Pearson, principle of Gurteen College, Co. Tipperary, for spearheading an ambitious renewable energy programme at the college.

This project brought about the installation of a wind turbine, solar electricity system and a biomass boiler, all of which are included in the college’s education module for students.

The biomass boiler is fuelled from willow grown on site and provides 80% of the heating in the college each year.

Speaking on the award win, Pearson said:

“This award acknowledges our efforts to go beyond sustainable energy best practice. Through demonstrating renewable energy technologies, we are preparing young farmers and rural enterprises for the future.”

Other winners in 2018 included MPOWER for its work with the Tallaght Community Living Lab. MPOWER received a €10,000 research bursary for its research project which aims to develop a model for communities to produce and share electricity at a local level.

Closing date for entries is Friday, June 14, 2019.

The winners will be announced at a gala event on Wednesday, October 16.

For those interested, further information on the contest and details on how to enter the 2019 SEAI Energy Awards can be found on the SEAI website.