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Irish Wind Energy Investment Tops €350 Million in 2014

08 January, 2015

Wind energy supplied power to 144,000 additional homes in 2014

2015 starts with a New Wind Energy Record

Irish wind energy projects developed and brought into operation in 2014 constituted a €352 million investment, and enough clean electricity generation capacity to power an additional 144,000 homes nationally, according to figures compiled by the Irish Wind Energy Association (“IWEA”).

Wind energy output also started 2015 on a high, hitting a new record peak of 1967MW yesterday, enough to power over 1.27 million Irish homes, and throughout 2014 Irish wind energy regularly delivered over 50% of Ireland’s entire electricity demand, a trend which is set to continue into 2015.

A total of 222MW of new wind generation capacity was installed in 2014 in the Republic of Ireland delivering a total installed capacity of 2263MW, enough to potentially displace over 2.3 million tonnes of CO2 when compared to traditional fossil fuels. There are currently 188 wind farms operating in Ireland with the industry employing over 3,400 people nationwide.

At local level, wind farms nationwide contributed over €15 million in commercial rates to local authorities, in addition to the significant individual contributions from wind farm operators to local community projects across the country.

Commenting on the figures, Kenneth Matthews, CEO of IWEA said, “2014 was another strong year for wind energy in Ireland with the sector delivering €350 million of vital investment, whilst at the same time helping us to reduce our dependency on foreign fossil fuels. As a country which is currently 89% dependent on foreign energy imports, costing Ireland approximately €6.7 billion per year, wind energy is helping Ireland to secure our own clean energy future, meeting 19% of our overall electricity demand in 2014, and is making a positive contribution to communities across the country.”

According to research by Pöyry and Cambridge Econometrics into the economic impact of wind energy development in Ireland, approximately 1,500MW of wind energy is still required to ensure that Ireland meets its 2020 EU renewable energy targets. Equating to approximately 250MW of additional capacity required annually over the next six years, the wind energy sector looks set to deliver an additional €2.4 billion investment into the Irish economy

“As we head into 2015, leaving us less than 6 years to meet our 2020 EU renewable energy targets, it’s essential that we maintain a stable policy environment to allow us to continue to harness this renewable natural resource, to protect us again EU fines by reaching our targets, and to secure Ireland’s place as a global green energy champion”, added Matthews.

The research also found that the development of wind energy can deliver additional cumulative tax revenue to the Irish State of €1.8bn if Ireland meets its 200 targets and continues to grow domestic wind capacity through to 2030.


Ends

Notes to editor:

• The new Irish Peak Wind Record of 1967MW was reached at 13.45 on the 7th of January 2015. For more information see: www.eirgrid.com/operations/

 

For more information:
Robert Brown
ReputationInc
01 4120514/0857252626
rbrown@reputation-inc.com

 

About IWEA
Established in 1993, the Irish Wind Energy Association (IWEA) is the national body representing the wind energy sector in Ireland. IWEA is committed to promoting the use of wind energy in Ireland and beyond as an economically viable and environmentally sound alternative to conventional generation and promotes awareness and understanding of wind power as the primary renewable energy resource. IWEA is also dedicated to education and awareness building, and to building the skills base of the renewable energy sector in Ireland. IWEA also supports the development of other renewable technology, particularly marine energy. IWEA has more than 200 members who incorporate all leading industry voices in Ireland. IWEA acts as a central point for information for its membership as well as a voice to promote wind energy to government. IWEA is entirely self-funded and relies on the support of its members. For more information, please visit http://www.iwea.com

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