From a pilot scheme in the Drumbane/Upperchurch community in rural Tipperary in 2012/2013, a nascent ECTC was formed in 2014, as 4 communities came together to carry out energy efficiency works on older houses and community buildings, leveraging grants from the SEAI under the Better Energy Communities scheme. 111 houses and 2 community buildings were upgraded, receiving a grant of €643k and generating 1GWh (Gigawatt/hour) in energy savings.
With this success, ECTC was formally founded in 2015 and grew to include 8 communities. The board of ECTC is made up of unpaid, volunteer directors from the participating communities as well as one each from North Tipperary LEADER Partnership (NTLP) and the Tipperary Energy Agency (TEA).
In 2015 and 2016, there were 261 houses and 8 community buildings upgraded, receiving a grant of €2m and generating 2.1GWh in energy savings. In 2017 ECTC is aiming to replicate the combined result of the last 2 years.
The board of directors are made up entirely of unpaid volunteers, who come from a wide geographical area and various backgrounds. Each participating community is entitled to have 2 directors appointed to the board. For any specific piece of work that needs to be carried out by the board, a sub-committee of the directors would be formed and these meet virtually by use of online collaboration tools and an audio conference service. The sub-committee will carry out its appointed task and then report back to the full board with a recommendation which will either be accepted or sent back to the sub-committee for further deliberation.
These directors report back to the local community energy teams and they also filter back any thoughts or recommendations from the local communities to the board. We also encourage and regularly have members from the local community energy teams attend the board meetings.
Our dedicated Project Manager coordinates the work, paperwork & liaises with all the relevant parties to ensure SEAI standards and deadlines are met.
The volunteer time given annually for free by the people involved demonstrates year on year to the communities participating that they believe in the scheme.