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Northern Ireland at the heart of renewable energy innovation

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Environment Minister Edwin Poots today highlighted the role that local businesses are playing at driving renewable energy innovation.

The Minister was speaking as he visited a local firm helping to provide a solution to sustainable home heating. Transen Sustainable Energy Systems specialise in the manufacture of ground source heat pumps which need only an electricity power supply to produce space heating and cooling and domestic hot water.

Speaking after a tour of the company’s plant in Coleraine, the Minister said: “This company is just one of the many local businesses who are at the forefront at driving innovation in the renewable energy sector. The technology that they manufacture is generally regarded as a cost effective, safe and environmentally friendly alternative to fossil fuels for both domestic and certain commercial applications.

“Only recently I published PPS18 and its associated Best Practice Guidance which provides bespoke information on this particular technology which can often be installed without having to apply for planning permission.”

Later in the day the Minister visited a residence in Armoy to view a Transen heat installation in operation. He said: “Besides the benefits to the consumer in cheaper fuel bills, and the obvious environmental benefits in reducing carbon emissions, the increased use of such technologies provide significant opportunities for local firms to use their extensive skills and knowledge to further develop our local renewable energy industry.”

Notes to editors:

1. DOE’s policy is contained in Planning Policy Statement 18 ‘Renewable Energy’ (PPS18) which provides policy and guidance on renewable energy sources and the principles of Passive Solar Design within the context of reducing green house gas emissions as part of Northern Ireland’s efforts in tackling climate change.

2. Planning Policy Statements set out DOE policies on particular aspects of land use planning and other planning matters and apply to the whole of Northern Ireland. Their contents are taken into account as a material consideration in the determination of planning applications and appeals.

3. Digital copies of PPS18 and it’s complementary Best Practice Guidance can be obtained from the Planning Service Website

4. Hard copies of PPS18 and its complementary Best Practice Guidance can be obtained from the Department’s Planning and Environmental Policy Group, Calvert House, 23 Castle Place, Belfast BT1 1FY.

5. All media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Environment Press Office on 028 9054 0003. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.