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Case Studies

All too often, we ignore the lessons to be learned on our own doorstep. We hear of the great sustainability work taking place in Copenhagen or Curitiba and suppose that we can’t replicate those projects in our own places.

The case studies on these pages are firmly rooted at home. Most are the work of councils, although we have also illustrated good practice from other organisations in Northern Ireland.

We encourage you to read these introductory articles and get in touch with the listed contacts if you want more detailed information. Use them as inspiration, copy them, reinterpret them or just admire them. They show that good practice can sometimes be a nimble traveller after all.


 

Social enterprise café at Belfast City Hall

Loaf Catering, a social enterprise that provides training and employment opportunities for local people with learning difficulties, operates Belfast City Hall’s Bobbin Coffee Shop.

Social enterprises are money-making businesses that invest profits into good works that have a positive impact on people, communities and the environment.

Energy efficiency at Greenbank Depot in Newry

Greenbank Depot is one of the largest of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council's premises consisting of offices, lorry depot, fleet maintenance garage and council stores.

The following energy upgrade works were carried out:

Water Efficiency Savings in Omagh with Help From The Consumer Council

The town centre building, which houses a number of community and voluntary sector organisations, received a large bill due to an unidentified water leak. John McKinney, who runs the centre, contacted The Consumer Council for help. The Consumer Council helped identify where the leak had come from, and helped Omagh Community House complete a leakage allowance form for NI Water, which led to a reduction of £3,895 on its water bill. 

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USEL Championing the Circular Economy

Usel, a social enterprise established in 1962 to provide supported paid employment for people within its Belfast manufacturing base, collects mattresses from council recycling centres, bed retailers and hoteliers across the province and brings them back to their licenced facility where they brough back to life. 100% of mattresses collected are diverted from landfill.

Sustainable heating solutions in the North West

Over 15 stakeholders from the North West of Ireland have participated in four study visits organised by project partner Derry City and Strabane District Council (Northern Ireland, UK). SECURE partners from ERNACT and Donegal County Council (Ireland) have also attended the trip to learn more about good local energy practices. 

Developing a smart district energy scheme for Coleraine

Causeway Coast And Glens Borough Council, in partnership with University of Ulster, hope to develop Northern Ireland's first smart disctrict energy scheme in Coleraine in an effort to support existing businesses and attract more business investment to the area.

Leading the way on sustainable transport

Fermanagh & Omagh District Council has been rewarded at the annual Sustainable Ireland Awards for introducing a fleet of ‘green’ vans, the first council in Northern Ireland to adopt such a strategy.

Celebrating Sustainability Video

This short film showcases some of the exemplary projects undertaken by some of the 26 ‘legacy’ councils and explores how this work has contributed to the pursuit of real economic, social and environmental sustainability.  

The film will enable councillors to develop a heightened awareness and understanding of the basic tenets of sustainable development. It can be of use to council officers working on sustainable development, providing a resource that may be used for a variety of educative purposes. In highlighting these outstanding projects, we hope it might stimulate their replication. 

Tree Planting at Jubilee Wood

To mark the 60th anniversary of the Queen’s reign, sixty new woodlands were established around the UK. The only one created in Northern Ireland is in Whitehead, where 60 acres of council-owned land were given over to the planting of 60,000 new trees.

In February 2012, around 1000 volunteers from the local community and much further afield joined forces, under the supervision of the council and the Woodland Trust, to create a future forest from some neglected fields.

Making a splash – Bangor’s Aurora Aquatic & Leisure Complex

Situated in the heart of Bangor, the £38m Aurora building opened in 2013 as a new flagship leisure complex and Northern Ireland’s first Olympic Swimming Pool and Elite Diving Centre. It boasts some remarkable design and construction features at the centre of a highly sustainable and innovative project.

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