With just over a week to go, excitement is building for Engineers Ireland Annual Conference and Exhibition 2017. Entitled ‘Challenges and Opportunities: Flooding and Renewable Energy in 2017’, the theme of this year’s conference reflects the critical role of engineering in assessing and mitigating challenges while excelling in innovation to meet both future energy demands and prevent flood risk. In conjunction with Engineers Ireland Midlands Region, Engineers Ireland has assembled an esteemed line-up of speakers and engaging topics that are relevant for the spectrum of engineering professionals who will gather in the Tullamore Court Hotel on Thursday, 4 May. The speaker line-up is blended to cover global, national and regional issues and to reflect the diversity and interest of our membership base. As the professional body for engineers in Ireland, Engineers Ireland represents almost 24,000 members ranging from CEOs to engineering students. This conference offers an opportunity for our members from the public and private sectors to come together and share ideas and experiences, in conference sessions or during networking breaks.

Overview of presentation topics and speakers

Opening address Anna Marie Delaney, chief executive, Offaly County Council Keynote address Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten TD
  • Engineering Insight
Challenges and Opportunities: Engineers Ireland Perspective Dermot Byrne, president of Engineers Ireland Changing Energy Landscape Marie Donnelly, former director for new and renewable sources of energy efficiency and innovation at DG Energy, European Commission
  • Navigating Current and Future Challenges
Planning and Environmental Approval of Projects – A Challenging and Changing Landscape Conall Boland, board member and deputy chair, An Bord Pleanála Flood Protection in the Netherlands Erik Kraaij, (deputy) director of the National River and Sea Defence Programme, the Netherlands Morning Overview Caroline Spillane, director general, Engineers Ireland
  • Afternoon Insight Session A – Engineering Flooding Solutions
Flood Risk Management in Ireland – Progress Made and Future Challenges Mark Adamson, head of flood relief and risk-management division, Office of Public Works Natural Flood Management: Methods and Evidence Dr Paul Quinn, School of Civil Engineering and Geosciences, Newcastle University Challenges of Flood: Protecting Modern Ireland Tony Cawley, senior hydrologist and director of Hydro Environmental Ltd
  • Afternoon Insight Session B – Renewable and Indigenous Energy in Ireland
Tomorrow’s Energy Scenarios Marie Hayden, manager of scenario planning, EirGrid Wind Energy post 2020: Challenges and Opportunities Dr Gary Healy, CEO, Irish Wind Energy Association Your Partner Behind the Meter: Ireland’s Largest Private Wire Solar Plant Tom Marren, founder and managing director, CES Energy

Afternoon activities

  • Mountlucas wind-farm site visit
In the late afternoon, delegates will have the opportunity to visit the Mountlucas wind farm. The Mountlucas site visit offers an opportunity to see at first hand an example of one of the largest renewable electricity generation sites in Ireland. The Mountlucas wind farm has an installed capacity of 84 MW, and is located in 1100 ha of cutaway peatlands, approximately 4km east of the village of Daingean in Co Offaly. It is in commercial operation since September 2014. The visit, led by Brendan Connolly, business development manager, Bord na Móna Powergen, will be hosted at the recently opened visitor meeting room facilities in the heart of the wind farm. Connolly will give a talk on the development and construction of the project, the ongoing initiatives on community engagement and advocacy associated with the wind farm, and the role of projects like Mountlucas in the transition to a low-carbon society. Places are limited for the site visit and places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. To register your intention to visit the site, please email aclarke@engineersireland.ie.
  • Dream Big: Engineering Our World movie screening
During the wind-farm visit, a screening of Dream Big: Engineering Our World will take place in the conference centre. Narrated by Academy Award-winner Jeff Bridges, Dream Big: Engineering Our World will transform how we think about engineering. From the Great Wall of China and the world’s tallest buildings, to underwater robots, solar cars and smart, sustainable cities, Dream Big celebrates the human ingenuity behind engineering marvels big and small, and reveals the heart that drives engineers to create better lives for people around the world. To view the movie trailer, visit: http://www.dreambigfilm.com/.
  • Interactive exhibition
The conference offers an opportunity for engineers from the public and private sector an occasion to come together to share ideas and experiences in conference sessions or while browsing in the exhibition. A number of exhibitors will join us on Thursday, 4 May including: Bord na Móna, Eirgrid, Roadstone, Kilasaran, Adman Engineering, Kelly Bros, Murphy Surveys and Grant Engineering.

Further information

For more information on Engineers Ireland Annual Conference and Exhibition 2017 or to book your delegate package, visit www.engineersirelandconference.ie. Anne-Marie Clarke | Events and Press Officer | Engineers Ireland, Dublin 4 | T: +353(0) 1 665 1307 | M: +353 87 6920 894 | E: aclarke@engineersireland.ie Engineers Ireland Annual Conference and Exhibition 2017, entitled ‘Challenges and Opportunities: Flooding and Renewable Energy in 2017’, will take place in the Tullamore Court Hotel on Thursday, 4 May 2017. Delegate packages are currently available from €159. To view the full speaker line-up and to book your preferred delegate package, visit: www.engineersirelandconference.ie.