Italian Students Learn About Sustainable Living During Trip To Northern Ireland
A group of 21 students from the North East of Italy paid a visit to Armagh to compare and contrast sustainable living tactics employed in Northern Ireland compared with Italy.
The group, who were guests of International House Belfast, toured around Northern Ireland to practice their English but also to learn about sustainable living and protecting the environment.
High on their agenda was a visit to Green Future NI’s zero carbon showhouse situated seven miles outside Armagh city centre. The showhouse, which was the first zero carbon house to be accredited by the Government, was set up as a learning hub for the students got to see how green technologies work in a traditional family home.
Ian Robinson, from Armagh, who was leading the delegation of students around Northern Ireland, said the trip to Armagh was a very special one.
He said: “The students and their leaders from Italy very much enjoyed Armagh. They thought it was a fantastic city and loved getting to see for themselves how easy it is to live in a sustainable, zero carbon environment.
“The students visited the Green Future NI showhouse to see the workings of solar panels, air source heat pumps and wood pellet boilers. They said people in Italy are very carbon conscious and were always sourcing ways to construct buildings which minimise harm to the environment.”
Clifford Glean, a spokesman and architect for Green Future NI designs, said it was great to see so many young people embracing a smarter way to live.
He said: “There is no doubt that living in a zero carbon home has many benefits. We are finding an influx of interest from people, from the north and south of Ireland. Zero carbon homes can eradicate fuel poverty. Last winter was a harsh one and people struggled to pay their fuel bills. But living in a zero carbon home means your home is high performing which promotes minimising energy consumption. It was great to see so many young people from Italy enjoy learning about the future of house building in Ireland.”
The students, who also visited organic farms, the Titanic Quarter in Belfast, Belfast Council’s recycling plant and the Marble Arch Caves in Fermanagh, will feed back on their experiences to the Italian Government.
Mr Robinson added: “This was a great trip for the students who got to practice their English language but also because they can go back to Italy with a great opinion of sustainability practices in Northern Ireland.”