From the Construct Ireland archives


Welcome to the archive of Construct Ireland, the award-winning Irish green building magazine which spawned Passive House Plus. The feature articles in these archives span from 2003 to 2011, including case studies on hundreds of Irish sustainable buildings and dozens of investigative pieces on everything from green design and building methods, to the economic arguments for low energy construction. While these articles appeared in an Irish publication, the vast majority of the content is relevant to our new audience in the UK and further afield. That said, readers from some regions should take care when reading some of the design advice - lots of south facing glazing in New Zealand may not be the wisest choice, for instance. Dip in, and enjoy!

Telling it Like it is

0206planningtitle.jpg
Iain Douglas, President of the Irish Planning Institute reveals his views on the state of planning in Ireland, and the factors which could not only damage the environment in Ireland, but also cause social segregation, and aid unsustainable development across Ireland

Silver Lining

Newbridge Silver, a silverware manufacturer in County Kildare
More and more businesses are looking to alternative energy sources to light, heat and cool their buildings but few have made a commitment to cutting carbon emissions to match Newbridge Silver, a silverware manufacturer in County Kildare. Jason Walsh visited the factory to find out more.

Heated agrément

0408-Heated-Agrement-SMALL Earlier this summer SEI announced that, from December, external wall insulation systems must have Irish Agrément certification to be eligible for support under the Home Energy Saving scheme. But many in the green building sector are critical of the decision, and some are questioning the value and purpose of Agrément. Lenny Antonelli reports.

Green power

Eamonn Ryan and John Gormley
Newly elected Green Party Ministers John Gormley & Eamon Ryan talk to Construct Ireland about their vision for a sustainable future.

Super powers

Super Powers
The development of sustainable building in Ireland has had to wait for the public to become concerned about energy supply, climate change, and the implications of living in draughty, damp buildings.  Much of the established low energy know-how emanates from countries where cold winters drove innovation. Drawing from 50 years of research and development between the Canadian government and housing industry, the Super E programme may be just what Ireland needs, as John Hearne discovered at a new development in Rosslare.

Private joke

Public private partnership schemes have come to dominate many aspects of Irish infrastructural development, from toll roads to urban regeneration schemes
Public private partnership schemes have come to dominate many aspects of Irish infrastructural development, from toll roads to urban regeneration schemes. Jason Walsh asks if they amount to privatisation by stealth and whether they come at too high a social and environmental cost.

Static electricity

0404-Static-Electricity-SMALL.jpg
The announcement in 2007 of the introduction of Smart electricity metering led to widespread hope that Ireland could set a global example by empowering consumers to cut electricity use and generate their own renewable electricity. John Hearne investigates current progress on the initiative, and discovers signs that Ireland’s approach to smart metering could represent a missed opportunity.

A Lesson in Energy Efficiency

0302-energyeffiencylessontitle.jpg
The Department of Education has made its commitment to energy efficiency and CO2 reduction clear in developing and bringing into practice targets for primary school design that aim for less than half of the accepted good practice in the field. Project coordinator John Dolan, Senior Engineer with the Department of Education explains how this approach works within normal Departmental budgetary limits to create school buildings that show the way ahead for building designers.

From Rio to here

BRENDAN HOWLIN, T.D., Minister for the Environment (1994-1997) reflects on the blueprints, policies, and commitments that emerged from the Rio Earth Summit and looks at how far we have progressed since

Eamon Ryan's eco upgrade

Eamon Ryan's eco upgrade
During his tenure as energy minister Eamon Ryan instigated plans to energy upgrade Ireland’s draughty, damp housing stock. Ryan and his wife, writer Victoria White, show Construct Ireland how their own home has been given the green treatment, and architect Mike Haslam of Solearth describes the project.