Irish Defence Forces Becomes World’s First Military to Get ISO 50001

Irish Defence Forces Become World's First Military to Get ISO 50001

The Defence Forces of Ireland became the first military in the world to be certified to ISO 50001 Energy Management standard today when the Deputy Chief of Staff (Support) Major General Conor O’Boyle accepted the award on behalf of the Organisation at a special ceremony in Cathal Brugha Barracks, Dublin.

Dr Brian Motherway, Chief Executive Officer of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland attended yesterday afternoon along with Ms Ruth Burke of SGS Ireland who presented the award as the independent external auditor.

Speaking at the event Major General Conor O’Boyle said:

 ” I am particularly pleased that the Defence Forces have achieved certification to ISO 50001. This result was achieved because many people worked very hard across the entire Defence Forces, across all Formations, Corps and Services to achieve this level of excellence……. I remain confident that we can achieve our energy targets without compromising our operational capacities. It is my intention to continue to drive our energy strategy and I am certain that we can continue to achieve our energy objectives up to and beyond 2020.”

ISO 50001 is the internationally recognised energy management standard and the Defence Forces were audited by external experts, SGS Ireland. The Defence Forces now operates a centrally managed energy monitoring system to allow the organisation to continually monitor and improve its energy performance. The benefits of being associated with this standard will ensure that the Defence Forces continues to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions as well as reducing the organisations spending on fuel.

Colonel James Burke, Energy Management Director for the Defence Forces and head of the Engineer Corps, the Flag Officer Commanding the Naval Service, Commodore Mark Mellett and General Officer Commanding the Air Corps General Paul Fry also attended the event.

The basic function and scope of military operations requires the efficient use of a diverse range of energy sources. The Naval Flotilla and Air Corps Fleet conduct regular patrolling to monitor the security of the Irish Coastline and Army installations have to function effectively to facilitate the deployment of troops in support of security operations in the State and overseas. In order to achieve these tasks, the Defence Forces is required to use basic utilities such as electricity and natural gas as well as specific types of transport fuel including marine diesel and aviation fuel.

Effective Energy Management is a key strategic objective of the Irish Defence Forces. A formalised energy monitoring system was implemented in 2007 across all three services of the Defence Forces (Army, Naval Service Air Corps).

Improved energy performance protects the organisation against rising energy costs, optimises operational efficiency and maximises value for money across the Defence Forces. Senior managers of the Defence Forces meet regularly to review the organisations energy performance as well as to plan and implement further energy reduction measures. The Defence Forces have produced an Energy Policy which has been formally endorsed by the Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Sean Mc Cann. At the end of 2012, the Defence Forces used approximately 192GWh of Energy across its seven main energy consuming installations. This represented a remarkable decrease of 12.3% of annualised consumption over the previous 5 years with a total energy saving across the Defence Forces in the region of € 4 million over the same period.

Press Release, June 14, 2013; Image: Irish Defence Forces