IRELAND NOW has enough renewable energy on its electricity grid to provide power to about 1.5 million homes.
Eirgrid, which operates the electricity grids in the Republic and Northern Ireland, states in its annual renewable energy report that there is a total of 2,262 mega watts (MW) of renewable generating capacity between both systems. At full capacity, this would be enough electricity to provide power to 1.5 million homes.
The vast bulk of this comes from onshore wind farms, which can supply electricity about 35 per cent of the time, when wind speeds are at their optimum for generating power.
Eirgrid’s report states that Ireland occupies “a world-leading position in integrating large amounts of renewable energy onto the power system”.
Launching the Eirgrid Group Annual Renewable Report yesterday, Minister for Energy Pat Rabbitte said he was confident the Republic would reach its target of generating 40 per cent of electricity needs from renewable sources by 2020.