Offaly County Council has appointed Siemens to conduct a leading research project exploring the potential and opportunities for the integration of a data centre with renewable energy and green hydrogen in the midlands.
Building on the energy heritage built up through the peat-generation era, this project at Rhode Green Energy Park will provide evidence-based research to enhance the development of green energy enterprises within the Midlands, a region in close proximity to the Greater Dublin Area.
This study is co-funded by the Just Transition Fund and North Offaly Development Fund (NODF). The North Offaly Development Fund is a community group with Rhode Green Energy Park as its flagship project.
Harness potential of the site
Chaired by Eugene Mulligan, the group has been working in close collaboration with Offaly County Council for a number of years to harness the potential of the site.
Throughout the county, Offaly County Council has taken a lead role in embracing renewable energy in recent years and is examining opportunities in emerging areas including green hydrogen and synergies between renewable energy generation, battery storage, large-scale energy usage and spin-off industries.
The chief executive of Offaly County Council, Anna-Marie Delaney, said: “The co-location of diverse renewable energy systems integrating into the national grid at Rhode Green Energy Park provides unique prospects for cutting edge innovation and demonstration hubs.
"Collaborations between industry, academia and stakeholders are under way to explore opportunities such as a green hydrogen integration and demonstration hub, and large-scale energy user integration with renewables. Siemens brings leading international experience and expertise in data centres and renewables.”
Joe Walsh, general manager of Siemens Limited, Dublin said that his team was looking forward to working on this project, "which is anticipated to deliver key insights of both regional and national significance as the study will examine how to decarbonise data centres and the key learnings can be applied more generally to Ireland as a whole”.
Councillor Liam Quinn, cathaoirleach of Edenderry MD and director of NODF CLG, welcomed the initiative. He said that it demonstrated Offaly’s commitment to innovation and sustainable economic development and is an important milestone in the development of Rhode Green Energy Park.