Annual Report 2017

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The Peat business supplies milled peat to Bord na Móna’s Edenderry power plant and the two ESB power plants, Lough Ree Power and West Offaly Power. We also supply peat to the Horticulture business for the manufacture of growing media products for the professional and retail markets and to the Fuels business for the manufacture of peat briquettes.

Employee insight.

Eileen is witnessing the biggest transformation ever in the business.

Loyal and committed employees are definitely an organisation’s best asset. I firmly believe this. Having worked for over 33 years in Bord na Móna in four different business units I have seen this first hand.

Currently responsible for communication and change management, I am witnessing the biggest transformation ever in the business and again it is the employees led by a strong experienced leadership team - that will ensure success. To meet the significant business challenges ahead we are progressing fundamental culture change while retaining the positive culture of loyalty, commitment and endeavor.

What I enjoy most in this role is watching people who have worked in this business for many years and who have had very strongly held beliefs change because they know in the end it is for the survival of the organisation.

When we set about the Peat business transformation we realised very quickly that any plans to move the business forward must include all the employees and change will only be brought about through people. Communication is paramount to bringing about change and we have put in a lot of time and effort in getting the relevant information to our employees. Getting timely information to 1,200 employees can be quite challenging as they are dispersed in multiple locations across 11 counties. It has been rewarding seeing our participation rate and engagement score rising significantly in the last two employee engagement surveys. We have made significant inroads in to our cost reduction initiatives and this can only happen by communicating effectively with our employees.

We have lots of work to do and I am very lucky to be part of a team that will drive to ensure we have a sustainable business out to 2030.

Eileen McGuinness
Communication & Change Manager

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FY17 at a glance

Edenderry power plant secured planning permission to December 2023 ensuring the continuation of peat supply to the plant.

Significant progress made on the implementation of the business transformation programme to ensure a viable peat business for Lough Ree and West Offaly, following expiry of the PSO support in 2019. Main achievements included the outsourcing of peat road haulage and supply chain efficiencies in rail transport of peat.

Commenced commercial discussions with the ESB on peat and biomass supply to West Offaly Power and Lough Ree Power to ensure a sustainable peat business and employment.

Significant capital investment in production and transport machine replacement including major upgrade of the locomotive fleet.

Agreement on investment of €3.6 million to refurbish rail infrastructure over a three year period.

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In line with Bord na Móna’s sustainability policy we will continue to supply peat for energy generation until 2030. The co-firing of the peat stations with biomass will ensure reduction of CO2 emissions and will compare favourably with other stations on the system.

The business is fully committed to achieving the cost reductions as set out in the business transformation programme which will enable our power station customers compete on the open market without any financial support for peat.

The Peat business is intent on fully utilising our developed peat resource to sustain the business and employment up to 2030.