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Range of initiatives unveiled at GMIT Green Campus Open Day

Minister for Communications, Climate Action & Environment Denis Naughten addresses event

Author: 

Press Office

Date Article Written: 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

GMIT’s Green Campus Committee held its annual open day earlier this week (2 October) with members of the public, students and staff finding out about initiatives and projects in waste prevention & reduction, energy efficiency & conservation, water conservation & protection, biodiversity, smart sustainable transport and education initiatives in all campuses.

The event was attended by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten and Galway East TD Sean Canney, companies and organisations involved in the ‘green’ sector, and school children from nearby GaelScoil Dara.

Welcoming Minister Naughten and Deputy Canney, GMIT President Fergal Barry, says: “Our Green campus open event reflects our staff and students’ commitment to green principals, energy efficiency and renewable energy systems in our physical environment as well as modules embedded in our academic programmes.”

Minister Naughten delivered a talk to a cohort of Energy Engineering and Construction students on topics related to the National Mitigation Plan, and visited some of 20 stops on the GMIT Campus Sustainable Energy Tour. Other events included:
• Exhibition & stands with leading companies and organisations offering information and advice such as Barna Recycling, Ecological Building Systems, Unitherm Heating Systems Ltd., ProAir Heating and Ventilation Systems Ltd., Nissan, Galway County Council, Renewable Energy Systems, Celtic Product Developments Ltd., Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), GMIT, and Smarter Travel;
• Workshop and seminar delivered by the Sustainable Energy Community (SEC) group, taking place in GMIT Library at 3pm.
• GMIT Campus Sustainable Energy Tour consisting of 20 stops and led by a group of final-year Energy Engineering students.
• Infrared camera demo;
• E-cars on display (fronting Dublin Road, Galway, campus);
• Competitions and prizes
• Student poster exhibition (School of Engineering)

Chairs of the GMIT Green Campus Committee, Dr Mark Kelly and Dr John Lohan, GMIT School of Engineering, said “Since the launch of our Green Campus application last year, GMIT has focused on embedding sustainability into the curriculum through a number of initiatives in the School of Engineering. One of the main aims of this year’s event was to stimulate further engagement with students and staff to ensure that sustainability becomes a core element of all disciplines in the Institute. In addition, GMIT has been working towards achieving SEAI Sustainable Energy Community status, building on the previous success of the B Eng Energy Engineering and B Sc Construction Management undergraduate programme and postgraduate research involving extensive community collaboration with the Aran Islands and other communities.

GMIT’s Mayo and Letterfrack campuses have already achieved Green Campus status in a variety of categoris. GMIT Mayo was the first Institute of Technology in Ireland to receive the coveted Green flag for energy, litter, waste and water (2011), and the first to receive the green flag for biodiversity. Plans are also underway to secure a green flag for transport. GMIT Mayo is also the first campus in Ireland to have an outdoor living structure classroom - made from willow. It was built by students on a variety of degree programmes as part of their coursework last year. GMIT’s two Galway city campuses are currently meeting targets to achieve Green Campus status, following submission of its application last year (2016). For further information on GMIT’s Green Campus activites, see www.gmit.ie/green-campusFor further information on GMIT’s Green Campus, see www.gmit.ie/green-campus

Minister Denis Naughten (centre) with children, and their teacher, from nearby Gaelscoil Dara, attending the GMIT Green Campus Open Day ealier this week.

Minister Denis Naughten (centre) with children, and their teacher, from nearby Gaelscoil Dara, attending the GMIT Green Campus Open Day ealier this week.

Minister Denis Naughten (centre) with children, and their teacher, from nearby Gaelscoil Dara, attending the GMIT Green Campus Open Day ealier this week.L to R, Dr John Lohan, Dr Fergal Barry, Deputy Canney, Minister Naughten, Cllr Michael Maher (Governing Body) and Dr Carine Gachon