Eurostat estimates that in 2014 carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossil fuel combustion decreased by 5.0% in the European Union (EU), compared with the previous year. CO2 emissions are a major contributor to global warming and account for around 80% of all EU greenhouse gas emissions. They are influenced by factors such as climate conditions, economic growth, size of the population, transport and industrial activities. Various EU energy efficiency initiatives aim to reduce emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases. It should also be noted that imports and exports of energy products have an impact on CO2 emissions in the country where fossil fuels are burned: for example if coal is imported this leads to an increase in emissions, while if electricity is imported, it has no direct effect on emissions in the importing country, as these would be reported in the exporting country where it is produced.

Source: http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/products-press-releases/-/8-15062015-BP

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COM_15-02-26_IPB Athlone_049
Tom Rowan, MD of Rowan Engineering Consultants, yesterday presented at the IPB Risk Management Conference for the Education Training Boards in Ireland. The conference was held in Athlone this year. The presentation covered ‘Investigating accidents’, which included risk management and the roles of investigators and engineers in investigation accidents.


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The County Meath Heritage Forum, facilitated by the Heritage Office of Meath County Council, has prepared a Draft County Meath Heritage Plan 2015-2020 and a Draft Meath Biodiversity Action Plan 2015-2020 and is looking for your views from now until Tuesday 3rd March 2015.  The Draft Plans set out a series of actions which need to be taken over the next six years to protect, interpret, promote, manage and conserve both our heritage and biodiversity.

The public are invited to make a written submission on the Draft Plans from now until 5.00pm on Tuesday March 3rd 2015. For further details on the Action Plan, visit this webpage.

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The EPA have released provisional greenhouse gas emissions figures which show that total greenhouse gas emissions fell by 0.7% to 57.81 million tonnes in 2013. While the overall reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is welcome, the picture in individual sectors is mixed; specifically, those sectors not part of the EU emissions trading scheme all show increased emissions.

Over 70% of Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions come from three sectors. This highest emitter is theAgriculture sector at 32.3% of the total. The next highest emitter is the Energy sector (primarily electricity generation) at 19.6% followed by Transport at 19.1%. The remainder is made up by Industry and Commercial Services at 15.4%, the Residential sector at 11.1% and Waste at 2.5%.

Greenhouse gas emissions from the Energy sector decreased by 11.1% in 2013 as power generation increased from renewable energy, including both wind and biomass. Similarly, emission levels inIndustry and Commercial Services recorded a decrease in emissions (0.7%) in 2013.

All other sectors – Agriculture, Transport, Households and Waste – showed an increase in emission levels in 2013. The increase in the Agriculture sector (2.6%) is driven by increased use of synthetic fertiliser and higher animal numbers including dairy cows and beef cattle. This reflects on-going expansion in milk production under the Food Harvest 2020 strategy.

Extracted from: http://www.epa.ie/newsandevents/news/previous/2014/name,55666,en.html#.VNiKu_msW4E

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The EPA have published three waste bulletins that provide the latest trends on household waste; treatment of residual waste (typically black bin waste); composting and anaerobic digestion.

In recent years there have been a number of developments in the waste infrastructure and legislative landscape that have led to changes in how residual waste (i.e. typically black bin waste) is managed. An increasing share of residual waste is being used as an energy source/fuel and less is being sent to landfill. This is linked to the increase in the landfill levy and the availability of more waste-to-energy outlets, including abroad.

In terms of household waste, there was a slight increase in the quantity of household waste collected in 2013. The trend in household waste managed per person in the State has, however, remained relatively stable since 2011. There was a slight increase in municipal waste (from both households and commercial premises) treated at composting facilities in 2013.  This includes an 8% increase in brown bin waste (mainly food waste) accepted at composting and anaerobic digestion facilities.

National legislation introduced in 2013, governing the separate collection of household food waste, is expected to have a positive impact on the quantity of municipal waste undergoing composting and anaerobic digestion. Such waste has not shown any significant increase since 2011. The roll out of the brown bin to households on a phased basis commenced in July 2013 and will be completed by July 2016 – this will need to be effectively enforced if it is to have maximum impact.

Extracted from: http://www.epa.ie/newsandevents/news/previous/2014/name,55476,en.html#.VNh-X_msW4E

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The EPA has issued draft guidance on Financial Provision, which can be downloaded and viewed here.

This document sets out broad guidance in relation to how the EPA anticipates it will approach financial provisions.  The EPA has sought to make the guidance representative of its current general position.

This draft document will replace and revoke Guidance on Environmental Liability Risk Assessment, Residuals Management Plans and Financial Provision (EPA, 2006).

This document is open for comments from the public, the deadline for public consultation is Thursday 6th November 2014.

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From the 25th March 2014, Rowan Engineering will be operating from our new office in Trim. Our new postal address is: Unit 1 Scurlockstown Business Park, Trim, County Meath.

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The EPA have published preliminary figures for municipal solid waste generation and management in 2012. These figures provide valuable information about how we generate and dispose of municipal waste, and inform Ireland’s approach to developing a resource-efficient society.

The figures show that there has been a shift away from landfilling municipal waste in recent years.  In 2012, 44% of municipal waste was consigned to landfill compared to 53% in 2011. This change is as a result of increases in the landfill levy and increased opportunities for operators to send municipal waste to recovery solutions.

An increase in use of waste as a fuel (energy recovery) has contributed significantly to an increased recovery rate for municipal waste.  This has arisen for a number of reasons: Ireland’s first municipal waste-to-energy incinerator became fully operational in 2012; cement kilns are using waste as a fuel; and the export of refuse derived fuel to waste-to-energy incinerators on the continent has increased.

These initial estimates indicate that the proportion of municipal waste recycled in Ireland in 2012 is 38%, which is down from the 40% recorded in 2011.

These preliminary estimates indicate that Ireland is on track to achieve the 2013 EU Landfill Directive target of diverting biodegradable municipal waste from disposal to landfill. However, meeting the 2016 target is at risk, particularly should economic recovery lead to increased generation.

Extracted from: https://www.epa.ie/newsandevents/news/name,53524,en.html#.VNh8PvmsW4E

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