Trinity College Dublin will provide on-campus students with lamps this winter to use in the event of a power outage in Dublin. The college said the move was “a precautionary measure” in the interest of student safety.
The lamps will be offered to some 600 students living on the campus in the city center and another 900 living in dorms in Dartry. In the 2022/2023 academic year, the number of students at the university of applied sciences will exceed 20,000 for the first time. The vast majority of students live off-campus, at home or in private rental housing.
A college spokesperson said: “We understand there is a risk of blackouts this coming winter, as noted by the media. Should that happen, we want to make sure our campus residents have backup lighting.”
In an email to university tenants, university authorities said: “You may be aware of media reports that electricity suppliers in Ireland have advised on the possibility of power outages this winter. For your safety, the university has purchased a battery-operated lamp for each individual resident. Your lamp comes with batteries, but it is your responsibility to check your lamp regularly and purchase your own replacement batteries,” the email advised.
Trinity College has an existing ban on the use of candles in rooms, many of which are hundreds of years old.
In the event of power shortages, there is a good chance that homes and businesses will be affected first.
Eirgrid has confirmed that “social and economic growth; the reliability of an aging fleet of conventional generators and the failure to provide contracted generation” had tightened electricity supplies.
The company added that it was working with generators to maximize power plant availability and optimize grid operation.
Industry sources say a potential European gas shortage could exacerbate problems, including intermittent wind power and increasingly unreliable, older conventional electricity generators.