VIDEO

Seamus Dunbar wins National Community Energy Champion title

Manorhamilton man wins title at Get Involved Awards

Fiona Heavey

Reporter:

Fiona Heavey


Manorhamilton's Seamus Dunbar brought home a national title this week as he was awarded Community Energy Champion at the 'Get Involved' awards in Dublin on May 11.

Seamus competed alongside projects from all over Ireland to win the award worth €3,000. He presented his work with North Leitrim SEC at the awards in a Dragon Style interview and the judges were delighted with his work.


'Get Involved' is a way for local communities all over Ireland to work together to improve their own lives, create local jobs, and protect the environment. The awards initiative is developed by 51 local newspapers throughout Ireland.


The judges for this year’s award have been very impressed by Seamus and the North Leitrim Sustainable Energy Community (NLSEC) and how far they have come in just 12 months.


Seamus is the Chairperson of NLSEC group who are working to reduce the amount of energy and carbon consumption, identify energy sustainability and to make people aware of the amount of energy they use on a daily basis in the North Leitrim area. 
The group have established important links in the border region and nationally, they have established a Community Charter and are involved with businesses and residents in the Manorhamilton area.
The NLSEC will soon be incorporated as a Company Limited by Guarantee as part of their registration into a three year programme with SEAI.


The group have already raised much awareness and have been included in the Energy Master Plan. They are working with the community to reduce energy costs.
In the long term they want North Leitrim to be a leader in Green Energy Technology that is owned and controlled by the community.
The group are hoping to facilitate training in wind turbine construction this Autumn.
Funding is being sought to complete an Environmental Impact Statement in relation to the impact of a micro hydro station on the Owenmore River System in Manorhamilton.
In developing the micro-hydro scheme the SEC are collaborating with the Tidy Towns Committee and Leitrim County Council to develop the river frontage as an amenity area for the town and as a loop off the proposed SL&NCR Greenway.

The judges which included Duncan Stewart and Ciaran Phillips from the EPA were impressed with how the group have involved the local community and their ambitious plans for the future.

The winners of the main award were two projects Broadford & Ashford Walking Trail in Limerick and St Patrick's NS, Skibbereen, co cork for their sensory garden.

Local Revamp Furniture Recycling in Longford were the runners up.

For more details on the other projects and how to participate visit: Get-involved.ie