Belfast Met taking the lead in multi-million European energy project

An energy sustainability project led by Belfast Met has been given the green light after securing EU funding of €9.39million. Pictured are: Paul McCormack, GenComm project manager; Peter Smyth, GenComm finance manager; Marie-Thérèse McGivern, principal and chief executive of Belfast Met; Glenny Whitley, GenComm pperations & communications Manager and Damian Duffy, Belfast Met director of development.

BELFAST Metropolitan College is leading the way in a new multi-million pound project aimed at delivering Europe's future energy requirements.

An energy sustainability project led by Belfast Met has been given the green light after securing the £8.4 million (€9.39 million) EU funding.

The Gencomm Project aims to answer the energy sustainability challenges facing remote communities across north-west Europe through production and storage of renewable hydrogen.

The project will develop three pilot facilities fuelled by solar power, wind power and bioenergy to measure their ability to produce and store hydrogen, together with its viability as a sustainable energy solution for heat, power and fuel for communities across Europe.

Belfast Met is working in conjunction with nine universities and private companies across Europe to deliver the project and partners include Northern Ireland organisations Viridian, TK Renewables, and Williams Industrial Services as well as the National University of Ireland in Galway.

Principal and chief executive of Belfast Met Marie-Thérèse McGivern said the Gencomm project is the latest chapter in the further education sector.

"A chapter where further education is recognised as the primary conduit to deliver the technological skills mix required to enable today's industry to deliver tomorrows energy requirements.

Belfast Met is the first college of further and higher education in Northern Ireland to secure Interreg North-West Europe Programme funding and one of the largest EU projects ever secured by an Northern Ireland led Partnership.

Director of development Damian Duffy added:

"Securing this project best demonstrates the contribution which FE Colleges can make to the development of applied innovation solutions working in partnership with researchers and industry.

“This is the largest award of EU funding Belfast Met has ever secured and the first time a College in Northern Ireland has been awarded funds from the Interreg North-West Europe Programme.

“This is testament to the strength and innovative nature of the project and the high calibre of partner organisations as we seek to work together to deliver hydrogen based solutions that will help address energy sustainability challenges to communities across north-west Europe.”

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