Renewable Energy
 

‘RECLAIMING LOST POWER’

HYDRO AUDIT 

 

‘Reclaiming Lost Power: Kilkenny’s Potential Hydro Power Sites’ is a report on hydro power in the county commissioned by Kilkenny LEADER Partnership (KLP) as a result of its recognition of the potential of the technology to be a driver of rural development. The company has identified hydro power as one of the renewable energies with significant potential for development.

Since Kilkenny is a county that is geographically defined by its rivers - the Barrow, Nore and Suir and also their major tributaries: the Blackwater, Kings, Dinnen, Arrigle and others - it was thought likely that untapped hydro-power potential would exist there.

So KLP commissioned a report to research and analyse which of the older or, indeed new sites, offer the best opportunities for development in the immediate future.

The study was part-funded by the European Fund for Rural Development Investing in Rural Areas through KLP.
Hydro power currently contributes to approximately 1.6% of Ireland’s total electricity production (Energy Statistics Databank, 2008).

“The county’s rivers were once a thriving source of enterprise and commerce, with a surprising number of mills of all types (grain, stone cutting, etc) crowded on their banks. Why should we turn our backs on their neglected resource when looking at renewable energy?”

Declan Rice, CEO, Kilkenny LEADER Partnership

What KLP wished to achieve in commissioning the report was to research and analyse which of the older or, indeed new sites, offer the best opportunities for development in the immediate future. The report was asked to take into account the available technology and regulatory system.

 

Guidelines and recommendations from the report include details about:

  • Determining the power output from a site and system

  • How to calculate the potential power and energy output

  • Selecting the appropriate turbine type

  • Planning permission

  • Guidelines on the construction and operation of small-scale hydro-electric schemes

  • Determining whether an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is required

  • Determining whether a fish impact study is required

  • Connecting to the national grid

  • Generating revenue

  • Available grants

    This study identified a hydro resource in County Kilkenny that can be tapped into by local community groups, land owners and local industries.

    The study, along with information about funding, is available to anyone wishing to develop a hydro power resource in Kilkenny.