Dáil debates

Thursday, 16 September 2021

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions

Energy Policy

9:50 am

Photo of Eamon RyanEamon Ryan (Dublin Bay South, Green Party) | Oireachtas source

It is a very significant issue throughout Europe and the world. I addressed it earlier but to reiterate, the primary reason for the higher prices this winter relates to a very dramatic spike in international gas prices. Gas is an internationally traded commodity and a fungible market that is influenced by events throughout the world. There has been a significant boost to the economy in Asia as it emerges from the Covid pandemic, and a considerable increase in demand for gas there has drawn much liquefied natural gas, LNG, which is a mobile gas resource, to the Asian market, leaving the European market short and the prices increasing. There have, for a variety of reasons, been restrictions on other supply, both within Europe for gas and from Russia, as well as from other sources, all of which has added to it. At the same time, the price of carbon on the European emissions trading system has increased to more than €60 per tonne. When carbon prices in Europe are so high, coal plants will switch off and gas plants will turn on because the price of carbon affects that of coal. That has led to a spike in demand, which has led to gas prices increasing.


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