Over-reliance on UK-sourced gas supplies could lead to an energy catastrophe by 2030
October 04 2021 02:30 AM
Ireland could face an energy catastrophe by 2030 if over-reliance on UK-sourced gas supplies is not eased.
One leading energy expert, Don Moore, warned that, unlike other European countries, Ireland has no adequate storage reserve for gas with all supplies delivered via the UK.
His warning came amid fears that Ireland could face electricity blackouts or brownouts over the coming years because of a shortfall between energy generation and demand.
Transport Minister Eamon Ryan has admitted that Ireland’s electricity supply will be “very tight” up until 2025 though he insisted that two gas-fuelled power stations in Cork and Dublin will come back on stream before December, easing the immediate situation.
However, Ireland is now involved in a race to develop and commission renewable energy generation sources to replace older power stations being taken out of commission such as the turf-fired stations closed in the midlands.
As the economy revives from the Covid-19 pandemic and electricity demand surges – spurred in part by a move to electric vehicles – pressure on power generation will soar.
Mr Moore, who is chairman of the Irish Academy of Engineering’s Energy and Climate Action Standing Committee, said Ireland is critically dependent on gas supplies delivered via UK networks and should consider strategic options.
“By 2030 the UK will be importing 75pc of its gas. If the UK is short of gas, are they going to export gas to Ireland?
“I doubt that very much,” he told Radio Kerry.
“Most European countries have storage facilities. Ireland has no adequate (reserve) supply of gas.