Sandymount Hotel named “Europe’s Leading Green Hotel 2017″

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The World Travel Awards were established in 1993 to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the tourism industry. The awards are recognised globally as the ultimate hallmark of quality, which sets the benchmark to which all others aspire.

Competing against top hotels across Europe, Sandymount Hotel are delighted to win this prestigious award ahead of fellow nominees like the IceHotel in Sweden, Vila Vita Parc in Portugal, Hotel Metropole Monte-Carlo in Cannes to name but a few.

‘It is a privilege to win the title of Europe’s Leading Green Hotel 2017. Over the past four years, the team at Sandymount Hotel have been part of a great transition. We have invested heavily in installing measures throughout the hotel to make it more environmentally friendly and we are continuously finding ways to progress. We would like to give a special thanks to our guests, friends and suppliers of Sandymount Hotel who voted for us to win this prestigious award.’ John Loghran, Owner, Sandymount Hotel

Nominees

The following were nominated for Europe’s Leading Green Hotel 2017

WTA Nominee Shield 2017 Angel’s Marmaris, Turkey
Boutique Hotel Stadthalle Wien, Austria
Corinthia Hotel Lisbon, Portugal
Eagles Palace, Greece
Hotel Metropole Monte-Carlo, Monaco
ICEHOTEL, Sweden
Inspira Santa Marta Hotel, Portugal
Leitlhof Dolomiten, Italy
London Heathrow Marriott Hotel, England
Quinta do Lorde Resort, Hotel & Marina, Portugal
Vila Vita Parc, Portugal

Green Teams National Training Programme Launched

Green Teams National Programme Launch details – Sep 2017

Developed by Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) and environmental consultants Consulteco, the programme was launched with Rosderra Meats and WIT’s internal green team candidates.  This programme is supported by the EPA’s Green Enterprise Programme.

2018 Small Business Awards Launched

Opportunities for SME’s to apply for the Sustainable Energy Award – Small Firms Association

Full details here

Closing Date:  Friday 20th October

Energy Credits – What are they and how do I get them

The Energy Efficiency Obligation Scheme (EEOS) is being implemented pursuant to the Energy Efficiency Directive 2012, Article 7. The Directive imposes a legal obligation on Member States to achieve new savings each year from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2020 of 1.5% of the annual energy sales to final customers of all energy distributors and all retail energy sales companies by volume, averaged over the most recent three-year period prior to 1 January 2013. The target is cumulative, which means that it is based on incremental annual savings that deliver a total volume of savings at the end of the obligation period in 2020.

Therefore, Energy suppliers and obligated parties need to meet their annual targets so are now buying the energy credits from your energy savings (kWhr). If you have a project that will generate verifiable energy saving credits, you can sell these credits to energy suppliers and obligated parties. The obligated Energy Suppliers then apply the energy savings towards their yearly targets, reducing overall energy consumption and carbon emissions.

Finally, energy saving credits can come from electricity, natural and propane gas, oil and solid fuel. Always remember that under the terms of the Energy Efficiency Directive obligated parties can only purchase energy credits for projects that will happen. They cannot purchase energy credits from completed projects.

What Projects create energy credits?

Any project that will result in your business permanently reducing your overall energy consumption, they can include; (Whenever the phrase “More Efficient” is used in any energy using equipment proposal = energy credits are available)

– Lighting upgrades – generally to LED – where most energy credit action has been focused over the past few years

– Central heating improvements – new, more efficient boilers/plant for producing heating and hot water

– HVAC systems – more efficient

– New motors and drives – Variable Speed Drives

– New equipment that includes increased energy efficiency – ovens, fans

– Leisure Centres – new/replacement heat exchangers, pool covers, more efficient filtration systems

– Controls – BMS upgrade, installing metering & Monitoring

– Insulation – pipes, walls, windows, roofs, etc.

– Human Resources – in-house energy management programmes that train staff to use less energy

How do I make a claim?

You must be able to verify the saving using the methodologies set by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI)

Outside of lighting this will require some form of metering and generally the support of an energy consultant (Contact GHP.ie for more information)

What is it worth?

The real saving when implementing an energy efficiency project are the cost savings that will follow – these could be for the life of the equipment. Energy Credit Payments are really a bonus which can either make the investment show a better ROI or could be used to fund additional energy efficiency improvements.

A guide price is 1.8c per kWh of a fossil fuel reduction and 4.5c per kWh for an electricity project reduction.  (Boiler Improvement led to a 250,000 kWh reduction in consumption = c. €4,000 payment net of application costs – a 200,000 kwh electricity reduction created by installing more efficient pumps would be worth a c. €8,000 payment net of application costs)

I am planning some energy equipment upgrades/replacements – what should I do next?

Contact us before you start and we will work with you to maximise your energy credit payment.  maurice@greentradingcompany.ie

 

 

NZEB – 2020 – Hotels

Near Zero Energy Buildings 2020 – Implications for the Hotel Sector

Nearly zero-energy buildings have very high energy performance. The low amount of energy that these buildings require comes mostly from renewable sources.  The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive requires all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by the end of 2020. All new public buildings must be nearly zero-energy by 2018.  (Further Reading:  Towards Nearly Zero Energy Buildings in Ireland – Planning for 2020 and Beyond – DOECLG 2012) 

What does this mean for new build Irish Hotels?

There are extensive plans to add additional hotel stock – especially within the Dublin Area.  The directive will require them to be built with low energy consumption as a priority.  If you have plans for development are your architects and M&E Consultants talking to you about NZEB – if not, why not.

Did you know that building a NZEB or Green Hotel – when planned from the beginning – only costs marginally more to build than a traditional wasteful build?  However, the running costs are at least 50% less – the paybacks are tremendous

What does this mean for existing Irish Hotels?

Ireland will fail to achieve its Climate Change reduction targets – 20% by 2020 and will suffer fines imposed by the EU.  This is not because the EU want to punish Ireland but because Irish Leaders – Government and Business – have failed dismally to engage properly.  Setting the increasing problems Climate Change will bring over the next 25 years the real business challenges is that there fines will be paid for by everyone who uses energy – or maybe not everyone!!

What energy users don’t have a vote?

Businesses.  Anybody who pays commercial energy rates will be fair game for price increases in all sorts of ways.  That includes the hotel sector where Energy is the single largest P&L direct cost.

Who will pay the fines?

Not the Government – Ireland Inc will be fined and the simple way to pay it, and avoid cutting government expenditure, is to levy additional costs when purchasing energy – Electricity, fossil fuels, transport fuels, PSO Levies, Carbon taxes, etc.  Because of negative publicity if domestic energy prices increase the temptation will be to push an unfair percentage on to the commercial sector = increased cost of energy for businesses.

What can we do?

Existing buildings (Hotels) can implement changes that will enable them to become more energy efficient.  How you create heat is key to this.  It also depends where your hotel is located.  Biomass (Wood burning) is really only viable outside major urban centres.  Within urban centres Heat Pumps and Solar PV are viable and the new Renewable Heat Incentive, to be launched late 2017/early 2018,  brings affordability to the market – who wouldn’t like to see a 50%+ decrease in heating & hot water costs.

Are you planning to upgrade your boilers?  Are you about to make a fundamental mistake and replace existing heating technologies with newer existing technologies?

One of the benefits of GreenHospitality.ie membership is to ask us questions about what you are planning.  Our GRENSupport programme can offer you independent advice on the optimal solutions for your hotel.  Don’t make a mistake by not talking to us.

 

Energy Prices – Current Observations

Pricing Observations.  Volume is key when comparing energy prices.  The more you use the lower your price should be.

LPG:  (We always look at the Cost per litre delivered including the carbon tax as this is the real cost to you)

We are seeing a 26% increase from September 2016 to September 2017 – Month on Month.  What is a good price?  If you are paying more than 40c/lt you need to talk to your supplier (Those businesses only using LPG for cooking will be paying a much higher price)

Electricity. 

There is very little difference in pricing here between all the major suppliers.  Individual businesses are not getting the lowest rates per kWh – those who engage with bulk buying providers can achieve lower rates.  Regular price benchmarking should take place between businesses that use similar quantities of electricity.  We look at the AUP – Average Unit Price = Cost (Excl VAT) divided by total units (Day plus night).  What is a good price?  A range from 11.5 to 14.5 c/kWh

Natural Gas

Another competitive market and again – similar volume users should be benchmarking their AUP.  What is a good price? A range from 2.5 to 4.0c/kWh.

Oil

Why are you still burning Oil?  It is the worst energy solution – switch and make substantial savings.  Those who switch today will jump a generation and could achieve up to 80% cost reductions

Real Cost Reductions

Good Practice advice is to tender out your energy annually – or lock in prices for no more than 2 years.

However, the real energy cost reductions come when you attack your consumption.  Up to 50% cost reductions can be achieved – 20% quite easily.    Work this out…do you know how much you spend on energy every year?  The average hotel spends c. €140,000 – 20% = €28,000 – 50% = €70,000  (Some hotels spend more than €300,000)

What increase in sales would you need to add that to your bottom line?

GHP.ie can assist you in identifying where you can reduce energy consumption.  For those members with online meter reading (MCC10 on your bill) we provide a free annual Electricity Consumption analysis. Contact us to assist you.  maurice@greentradingcompany.ie

Renewable Heat Incentive in Ireland

RHI for short – In Northern Ireland it is referred to as “Cash for Ash” and contributed to the downfall of their government executive – and will cream of c. €500 million of government funds that could be used elsewhere.

However, when it is launched in Ireland it will be much better managed and the more energy you produce the less the funding will be and there will be checks and balances to ensure that you don’t have a boiler in a field burning wood and wasting heat.

Why?

Because Ireland Inc. is failing in our commitments to reduce carbon emissions.  This failure ca be laid fairly and firmly at the feet of our political and business leaders.  They are not leading and they will be responsible for all energy users – domestic and commercial – paying increase energy costs.  But that is another days discussion.

What is it designed to do?

Encourage the use of Renewable Technologies and Energy Supplies to reduce our carbon footprint.  There is a huge focus on heating (Incl DHW – Domestic Hot Water) and this means that new technology will have to be installed.  This requires a capital cost and the RHI is designed to make this investment more palatable and deliver good ROI’s – so that businesses will engage.  How good?  Potentially businesses could see between 50-80% reductions in annual energy costs with 2-5 year paybacks.

How will it work?

It is not fully published yet but broadly this is how it will go – for every kWh of energy produced through the use of renewable technology the Government will pay a tariff or subsidy to the producer.  How much will the tariff be?  Not sure yet and discussions are underway to agree it.  A figure of 6c/kWh has been mooted. If a hotel is using 1,000,000 kWh of oil for heating and replaces their boiler with a Biomass Wood Chip Boiler the indicative figures would suggest – Annual RHI payment of  €60,000 plus an annual cost of fuel reduction of c.€30,000 = €90,000 per annum (Oil Cost was €55,00 pa) available towards the new Biomass Boiler.  If the Biomass installation cost €250,000 the payback would be 2.8 years – an attractive ROI.

How long will the tariff payment last?

It is proposed that it will run for 15 years.

If I don’t engage, so what?

There are 2 taxes included in our energy costs – a Carbon Tax and a PSO Levy.  The more RHI is paid out the higher these will go – so those who don’t engage will pay higher and higher energy prices.  Conversely those who engage and still use some fossil fuels will see their price increase but the “tariff” payments will ore than offset these increases.

I am interested – what should I do?

Contact GreenHospitality.ie and discuss your plans and the options available and how we can support your hotel.

I don’t want to spend capital on Back of House

Don’t – the market is changing and there are companies offering Pay-as-you-Save off-balance sheet solutions so that you can keep your capital for Front of House upgrades – whilst reducing your energy costs.  It is a Win Win solution

More Information

SEAI – Achieving Ireland’s 2020 Renewable Heat Target 

 

Autumn Workshops Launched

Focus on Reducing Waste – Increasing Profitability – FREE Workshops 

Nationwide Autumn Workshop Series – 09.00 to 13.00 each day                   BOOK HERE NOW

Workshop Locations

Venues will be announced as soon as they are confirmed

27th September – Co Clare, 28th September – Co Galway, 4th October – Dublin City,  5th October – Kilkenny City, 11th October – Killarney, 12th October – Cork

These workshop will focus on how hotels and hospitality businesses can reduce waste (energy, water and waste) which leads to reduced costs.  The workshops will also present current information on energy grant aid and supports to enable businesses fund energy efficiency investments

Who should Attend?   Hotel and Hospitality Managers, Accountants and Financial Controllers, Green Team leaders – anyone interested in reducing their energy costs

These are FREE events

The workshops are supported by REPAK and ENPROVA 

Workshops Outline

Waste Management – Compliance – Minimisation – Food Waste

Water Management – Do you know how much water you are using and when?  Low Cost options to save water and energy

Energy Management – Building efficiencies into your upgrades/developments – Grant Aid (Lighting, Energy Credits, Renewable Heating Incentive) – Opportunities for 2018 

GreenHospitality.ie – Developments – Certification (Hard vs Soft) – CSR Mark of Good Practice – GreenTravel.ie 

General Discussion – what are your Waste/Water/Energy challenges 

Attendee Action The workshop is designed to be inter-active so participants are encouraged to bring copies of your most recent Utility Invoices and prepare any questions that you would like answered

GreenHospitality.ie does not sell any product – we just give our clients/members independent good practice advice.

Workshop Locations

Venues will be announced as soon as they are confirmed

27th September – Co Clare

28th September – Co Galway

4th October – Dublin City  

5th October – Kilkenny City

11th October – Killarney

12th October – Cork

 

  BOOK HERE NOW

 

 

Pakman Awards 2017 – Launched

Chanelle McCoy launches Call for Entries for Third Annual Pakman Awards, powered by Repak which celebrates 20 years of success this year

 

Leading Irish businesswomen Chanelle McCoy, alongside Chairman of the Repak, Tony Keohane, has launched the call for entries for the third annual Pakman Awards to find Ireland’s recycling and waste management champions for 2017.The Pakman Awards recognise excellence in waste management and recycling among businesses, organisations, community groups and individuals in Ireland. The awards ceremony will take place on the 26th of October in the Intercontinental Hotel, Dublin. Nominations for the awards close at midnight on August 31st 2017.To enter the Pakman Awards 2017 – Click Here

It was also announced last week that Ms. McCoy, Dragons Den star, will lead the Pakman judging panel to select a winner for the inaugural ‘Innovation in Waste Management’ award. Chanelle’s extensive experience as an innovative entrepreneur and successful business owner makes her an esteemed choice to judge this new category.

Speaking at the launch of the 2017 Pakman Awards, Chanelle McCoy said: “I am delighted to be in Dublin today to announce that I will be joining the judging panel of the Pakman Awards, powered by Repak. As a business owner, I understand the importance for businesses to lead by example in putting excellent waste management into practice.

“As consumer and stakeholder awareness of environmental issues increases, the Pakman Awards provide a great opportunity for entrants to stake a claim as one of Ireland’s recycling and waste management champions, allowing nominees to diversify themselves from competition, providing real competitive advantages.

“I look forward to reviewing entries from Ireland’s businesses, organisations, individuals and community groups who are showcasing innovation in waste management and to help crown the 2017 overall Pakman Award winner.”

Tony Keohane, Chairman of Repak, added: “It is my great pleasure to join Chanelle McCoy today to launch the Pakman Awards 2017. The Pakman Awards demonstrate not just the innovative waste management practices of our members, but also an array of Irish organisations, communities and individuals nationwide who are encouraged to enter and demonstrate environmental excellence.

“The new inclusive format for the awards led to a record-breaking number of entries in 2016, but with the help of our members and other organisations across the country, we hope to make this year’s Pakman awards the most competitive to-date.’’

The 2017 Pakman Awards are sponsored by The Department of Communications, Climate Actions and Environment, The Environmental Protection Agency, The Irish Waste Management Association, WEEE Ireland, The European Recycling Platform and Repak.

The Pakman Awards was launched in 2015 by Repak to replace the Repak Recycling Awards and allow more accessibility for all organisations who demonstrate sustainability and environmental efforts to enter.

The inaugural Pakman Awards marked a significant change in direction for Repak whose awards were previously only open to its members and recovery operators. It is now open to anyone who can demonstrate their environmental waste management practices and efforts can enter.

For more information on the 2017 Pakman Awards – Click Here

See also #PakmanAwards2017

NOTE:  Closing Date is 31st August 2017 – Application covers actions from January 2016 to June 2017

Turning food waste into profit

A restaurant loses €24,000 a year to food waste, a hotel €150,000 – so tackling it makes sense

Irish householders throw away between €700 and €1,000 worth of food every year. Photograph: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

“It’s often easier to waste food than to give it away which is simply absurd and unacceptable.” So said, the EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis on his visit to Ireland in May.

The Commissioner explained that he was born in a Soviet gulag and as a child, he could never imagine a day when the world would be challenged by something called food waste.

Well, that day has arrived and over one third of the world’s food is lost or wasted according to current estimates. In developing countries, over 40 per cent of food losses happen after harvest and during processing, while in industrialised countries, over 40 per cent of food waste occurs at retail and consumer level. Irish householders throw away between €700 and €1,000 worth of food every year.

On his visit to Ireland, Andriukaitis said that we are at the tipping point when the “unethical and anti-economic situation of food waste” has to stop.

That there are now 1.5 billion overweight/obese people compared to 1 billion undernourished people is a stark reminder of global over-consumption. An EU campaign to stop food waste is now under way and in Ireland, the Environmental Protection Agency launched its Stop Food Waste charter in March, 2017 (stopfoodwaste.ie). One of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals also calls for a reduction of food waste by 50 per cent by 2030.

“By curbing the needless loss of precious natural and nutritional resources in the food value chain, we will also support the fight against climate change as food waste generates about 8 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions,” says Andriukaitis.

In Ireland, hotels and restaurants are waking up to the economic losses incurred by food waste. “Every tonne of food waste from a hotel or restaurant costs that business between €3,000 and €5,000,” says James Hogan, programme manager of the EPA-funded Green Business programme.

“An average restaurant loses about €24,000 per year from food waste and an average hotel loses about €150,000 per year from food waste,” he adds.

Up until the 1990s, hotels and restaurants sent their food waste as swill to be fed to pigs. However, following the Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) outbreaks and foot and mouth disease in 2001, the practice of feeding waste food to animals was outlawed. A new EU initiative is looking at how to make items such as stale bread and broken biscuits available as animal feed.

Since 2009, hotels and restaurants are legally obliged to have brown bins for food waste. “Segregating food waste makes sense. It’s cheaper to send it in brown bins, and most hotels and restaurants are doing this but some are doing it better than others,” says Hogan.

Members of the Irish Hotels Federation, the Restaurants Association of Ireland and the Local Authority Prevention Network met last week to look at ways to “turn food waste into profit”.

“It’s all about training staff to reduce food waste – finding out where food is being wasted and why, and seeing what you can do to change that, “ says Eileen O’Leary from the Clean Technology Centre at Cork Institute of Technology

Managing portion size is a key to reducing food waste, according to O’Leary. This includes having bowls of vegetables on the table rather than individual portions on each plate, looking at the size of plates used, offering half portions to customers who want it and encouraging people to take home what they leave on their plates.

Ollie Gleeson from Profitwatch carries out food waste audits to help hotels and restaurants reduce their food waste. “The big eye-opener for businesses is when they see all the food that has been wasted. We have reduced food waste by up to 69 per cent following these audits,” he explains.

These waste characterisation audits examine everything from how much food and of what quality arrives into the kitchen (compared with what was ordered) to how much comes back on customers’ plates. “We suggest weighing scales to prevent over deliveries, sealable containers for food that can be reused and serving smaller portions of sauces and side salads,” says Gleeson.

Communications between kitchen staff and front of house staff is a key, according to Gleeson. “The chefs need to know what’s coming back into the kitchen on people’s plates and also, it’s important to empower chefs not to give the same portion to constructions workers and older people coming in for their lunch in the middle of the day,” he says.

Annette Keenan from Keenan’s Hotel in Tarmonbarry, Co Roscommon, spoke about her experience of reducing food waste at the Turn Food Waste Into Profit seminar.

“People often think that they’ll have extra side orders like vegetables, garlic potatoes and chips but a lot of it comes back into the kitchen. Explaining the cost of each side dish and then asking customers whether they want extra sides encourages them to cut back,” she says.

Keenan adds that generally speaking, people tend to over order – particularly if they think they are getting it for free but this mindset is slowly changing. “People are getting more health conscious and portion size is the key, but we need to do food waste surveys every year to keep staff trained up on these issues,” she says.

Adrian Cummins, the chief executive officer of the Restaurant Association of Ireland, says that the customer is still king. “Restaurants are starting to look at food waste in terms of the lost profits but if a customer feels hard done by with small portions, you’re in trouble,” he says.

“The Irish palate is still looking for more food, rather than less, and there needs to be customer education on food waste. Our job is to provide food; it’s up to the State and health bodies to educate the customer on food waste,” he adds.

Facts on Food Waste

Twenty per cent of food produced in the EU is lost or wasted.

Food waste generates about 8 per cent of global greenhouse gases.

One of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals calls for a 50 per cent reduction in food waste by 2030.

The annual cost of food waste for householders in Ireland is between €700- €1,000.

An average restaurant loses about €24,000 per year from food waste.

An average hotel loses about €150,000 per year from food waste.

In developing countries, over 40 per cent of food losses happen after harvest and during processing while in industrialised countries, over 40 per cent occurs at retail and consumer level. See also stopfoodwaste.ie and http://ec.europa.eu/food/safety/food_waste/stop_en

The World Travel Awards were established in 1993 to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the tourism industry. The awards are recognised globally as the ultimate hallmark of quality, which sets the benchmark to which all others aspire. Competing against top hotels across Europe, Sandymount Hotel are delighted to win this prestigious award ahead of fellow […]

Read More


Green Teams National Programme Launch details – Sep 2017 Developed by Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) and environmental consultants Consulteco, the programme was launched with Rosderra Meats and WIT’s internal green team candidates.  This programme is supported by the EPA’s Green Enterprise Programme.

Read More


Opportunities for SME’s to apply for the Sustainable Energy Award – Small Firms Association Full details here Closing Date:  Friday 20th October

Read More


The Energy Efficiency Obligation Scheme (EEOS) is being implemented pursuant to the Energy Efficiency Directive 2012, Article 7. The Directive imposes a legal obligation on Member States to achieve new savings each year from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2020 of 1.5% of the annual energy sales to final customers of all energy distributors […]

Read More


Near Zero Energy Buildings 2020 – Implications for the Hotel Sector Nearly zero-energy buildings have very high energy performance. The low amount of energy that these buildings require comes mostly from renewable sources.  The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive requires all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by the end of 2020. All new public buildings must […]

Read More


Pricing Observations.  Volume is key when comparing energy prices.  The more you use the lower your price should be. LPG:  (We always look at the Cost per litre delivered including the carbon tax as this is the real cost to you) We are seeing a 26% increase from September 2016 to September 2017 – Month […]

Read More


RHI for short – In Northern Ireland it is referred to as “Cash for Ash” and contributed to the downfall of their government executive – and will cream of c. €500 million of government funds that could be used elsewhere. However, when it is launched in Ireland it will be much better managed and the […]

Read More


Focus on Reducing Waste – Increasing Profitability – FREE Workshops  Nationwide Autumn Workshop Series – 09.00 to 13.00 each day                   BOOK HERE NOW Workshop Locations Venues will be announced as soon as they are confirmed 27th September – Co Clare, 28th September – Co Galway, 4th October […]

Read More


Chanelle McCoy launches Call for Entries for Third Annual Pakman Awards, powered by Repak which celebrates 20 years of success this year   Leading Irish businesswomen Chanelle McCoy, alongside Chairman of the Repak, Tony Keohane, has launched the call for entries for the third annual Pakman Awards to find Ireland’s recycling and waste management champions […]

Read More


A restaurant loses €24,000 a year to food waste, a hotel €150,000 – so tackling it makes sense Irish Times, Sat, Jun 3, 2017, 06:00 Sylvia Thompson  Irish householders throw away between €700 and €1,000 worth of food every year. Photograph: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images) “It’s often easier to waste food than to give it away […]

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