Is Cap and Share the smart alternative to a carbon tax?

The Irish Times reports energy minister Eamon Ryan saying that a carbon tax is likely to be introduced this year. During last October's carbon budget, environment minister John Gormley also hinted that such a tax was likely to be introduced in 2009. Ryan said a floor price on fossil fuels was an alternative possibility.

Green building sector remains steady

A series of reports published in the US towards the end of last year appears to confirm that the sustainable building sector has yet to be seriously hit by the global economic downturn.

According to a report on residential building by construction company McGraw Hill and the US

The new cement that absorbs carbon dioxide

British engineers have developed a new cement that absorbs carbon dioxide and uses significantly less energy in its manufacture than the traditional Portland variety.

During the manufacture of Portland cement, a raw material such as limestone is heated to extreme temperatures,

Could Ireland be hit by Russia's gas supply cuts?

Russia today reduced it's gas flow to Europe via the Ukraine to a quarter of normal levels. Russian energy firm Gazprom said the cut was designed to compensate for the gas it claims Ukraine is illegally siphoning off. Ukraine denies the allegations.

Why the government must increase energy prices to fight the recession

Whilst the recent falls in oil prices may appear to be a welcome relief in difficult economic times, they may ultimately prove to do more damage than good. As falling oil prices today cause oil companies to invest less in new production to meet future demand, prices will increase once more.

10,000 UK jobs to be created by insulating homes

A plan to create more than 10,000 jobs in the UK construction industry by insulating homes in the private and public sectors will be announced by Alistair Darling in today's pre-budget report, The Guardian reports.

The UK government will apparently bring forward future capital spending

Awards honours for Belfast college

Teacher training centre wins recognition is reporting that the Orchard, a new building at Stranmillis University College in south Belfast has won two awards.

The building, at Stranmillis University, lifted a Wood NI Award, as well as gaining a commendation in

'Affordable' housing to revive market

Desperate builders develop social conscience? 

Housebuilder McInerney Holdings has warned it is facing difficult conditions in both its Irish and UK markets and that, as a result, it is delaying new site starts and focusing on its affordable

British house prices fall

Ireland not alone in collapsing property market

The Times reports that house prices in Britain are likely to fall by seven per cent in the next year alongside a 40 per cent fall in sales.

Interestingly, Britain is currently suffering from an acute housing shortage with

Off grid in the middle of nowhere

With all of the talk  about zero-carbon housing, the Guardian reports on one project that has resulted in an off-grid house.
Impressive as the results may be considered by some, it's probably rather too extreme for most people:
 Life on the most northerly inhabited island in Britain can be very tough indeed. On Unst the winters are harsh, and the winds brutal and relentless, regularly sweeping across the treeless landscape at more than 100mph. But Unst is the island chosen by a retired couple from Wiltshire to build one of the world's greenest houses - a "zero carbon" home powered entirely by the wind and the sun. It sits on the same latitude as southern Greenland, but will soon boast lemon trees, grapevines and green pepper plants in its greenhouse, an electric car powered by the wind, and floors heated by drawing warmth from the air.

Oil prices peak again

Now over US$127 per barrel 

As if we weren't bored hearing about oil prices, BBC News Online is reporting that the commodity is now over US$127 a barrel, an all-time high.

Oil prices have hit a record high above $127 a barrel on speculation that China will

Half of Irish building firms not working

Half of Ireland's construction companies have stopped building houses while they attempt to offload existing properties.

A report published today by Merrion Capital said that the current housing oversupply will take more than twelve months to clear up.

"The overall conclusion

Ireland could become renewable leader

Opportunity for massive growth in green energy sector reports that, "2,000 megawatts of electricity could be generated by the development of offshore wind farms in Ireland, with a saving of €236m every year in carbon offset costs."

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Precision Heating

Precision Heating is recognised as a leading supplier of heating and renewable energy products, to both residential and commercial customers throughout the whole of Ireland.