Power to the People! Tipperary Communities Take New Step to Tackle Climate Change


Energy Communities Tipperary Cooperative (ECTC) is taking a new step to tackle climate change with the appointment of Derry O Donnell as Development Coordinator. Derry will be engaging with and recruiting new energy communities and promoting Ireland’s first community owned electricity supplier ‘Community Power’, who are part-funders of the role.


A native of Borrisoleigh, Derry has long been involved in volunteering and working with various community and voluntary organisations both nationally and locally. He was the project manager for the successful Zero Waste Cashel pilot project and is a current Secretariat member of Tipperary PPN. Derry current serves as chairperson of Borrisoleigh Community Development Association and is a member of the local festival committee.


Since 2012, Energy Communities Tipperary Cooperative CLG (ECTC) has upgraded over 800 homes and secured almost €9 million in investment for Tipperary, with funding from Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland. All presided over by a volunteer board of community directors. As a not-for-profit company, ECTC’s mission is to allow communities in Tipperary and surrounding areas, to create local employment and community benefit through reducing their carbon footprint and generating community-owned energy. 


Development Coordinator Derry O Donnell said “Communities willing to join our cooperative, will have an opportunity to create employment and benefit the local economy and environment. ECTC has a fantastic track record in retrofitting houses to make them more energy efficient, warmer healthier homes. Now we are taking the next step, and asking people to switch to purchasing locally generated Renewable Energy, through our membership of Community Power, Ireland’s only community owned energy company.  This all results in more money being circulated in the local economy. It really is a win win for everyone!”


ECTC can trace its beginnings back to 2011 when the Drombane/Upperchurch Energy Project was initiated by the Drombane Village Group, which sought to stimulate economic activity within the parish of Drombane/Upperchurch. A number of other communities got involved and ECTC was formally founded in 2014 together with Birdhill Tidy Towns, Cappamore Development Association, Kilcommon/Rearcross Energy Team, Lorrha/Rathcabbin Energy Team, Terryglass Improvements Group, Kantoher and Burgess.


Liam Lynch, Chairperson of ECTC said “As a group of community volunteers, we are proud of our achievements of the last 5 years. We are excited about taking our next steps as an organisation to harness the opportunities offered by the energy transition and make our member communities more prosperous and sustainable. “


Derry will be speaking to community groups, individuals and businesses about how they can switch their electricity supplier to Community Power, which grew out of a partnership of community energy groups from Tipperary, Limerick, Galway, Mayo and Dublin. Profits from Community Power will be used to develop more community owned renewable energy.  To find out more or to get involved email derry@energycommunitiestipp.ie phone 086-3191673 or visit the websites energycommunitiestipp.ie and communitypower.ie

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