News Release from Wind Energy Ireland


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Wind energy industry welcomes increased offshore ambition

Ireland’s wind energy industry has welcomed the announcement by Government of an increased ambition of 7 GW of offshore wind by the end of 2030 but warned this ambition must be supported by the right policies.

Image: PixabayImage: Pixabay

Noel Cunniffe, CEO of Wind Energy Ireland, said: “Our members have a project pipeline of significantly bigger than 7 GW. We have the investment, the skills and the expertise to respond to this call to action from the Government. We can put offshore wind energy and green hydrogen at the heart of an energy independent Ireland.

“These new technologies will be building on the success of our onshore wind industry which is continuing to develop and deliver critically needed renewable energy projects and which has provided 37 per cent of Ireland’s electricity so far this year. It is onshore wind farms which are insulating Irish electricity consumers from the worst of the fossil fuel driven rise in gas prices.”


Wind Energy Ireland highlighted the need for planning reform and a stronger electricity grid if this new target was to be achieved. Delays in the planning system are already slowing the rate of connection of new wind farms. Although An Bord Pleanála has a statutory timeframe to decide applications from wind energy projects in 18 weeks the average time for a decision is over a year.

Noel Cunniffe continued: “Our planning system must be urgently reformed and properly resourced to ensure that the renewable energy projects needed to cut our carbon emissions and drive down electricity bills can get built as quickly as possible.

“The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage has the power to instruct An Bord Pleanála to prioritise specific categories of applications and we would urge him to instruct the board to give priority to renewable energy projects and grid reinforcements.

“Our electricity grid is not fit for purpose. We need to build critically needed new infrastructure like the North-South Interconnector and we must invest in EirGrid and ESB Networks to ensure that the system can, when the wind and solar is available, operate with 100 per cent renewables.

“If we are serious about this new target we need more power lines and underground cables to get power from the wind farms and solar farms which will generate it to the homes, farms and businesses that will need it.”

Wind Energy Ireland
Press Office
Wind Energy Ireland, offshore, ambition, government, Ireland, GW, wind farm, fossil fuel, warning, prices, costs, planning system, target, goal

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