Written answers

Thursday, 28 November 2019

Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment

Energy Policy Review

Photo of Thomas PringleThomas Pringle (Donegal, Independent)
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202. To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the scope and terms of reference of the proposed energy security review; the way in which this will be carried out; the person or body which will carry out the review; the timeline for same; if the review will consider questions of intergenerational and global climate justice; the way in which he will ensure that no conflict of interest ensues between stakeholders, regulators and policy makers in determining the energy interests of Ireland in the context of the climate emergency; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49604/19]

Photo of Richard BrutonRichard Bruton (Dublin Bay North, Fine Gael)
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The major review into Ireland's energy security and sustainability, which I have initiated, will:

- Consider the optimal actions that need to be taken, in reaching 70% renewable electricity, to ensure Ireland's electricity system is backed up in a secure, safe and sustainable way.

- Assess the role of gas during the transition, as the lowest CO2 emitting fossil fuel, and consider how and from where it is sourced.

- Review the role that other technologies can play in the transition, including battery storage, pumped storage, the role of interconnection (both gas and electricity) and the possibilities for hydrogen and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).

- Consider what the roadmap for renewable electricity looks like in the period from 2030 to achieving carbon neutrality in 2050

I have written to the Chairpersons of EirGrid, ESB, Bord na Móna, Ervia and CRU to seek their input into the review.

My Department regularly engages with State Agencies and other stakeholders as part of the normal process of feeding into policy development and formulation.

The review, which will be completed during 2020, will be carried out by an independent body following a public procurement exercise.

The full terms of reference of the review have not yet been finalised. However, it is not intended that this particular review will cover questions of intergenerational and global climate justice. I expect to finalise the terms of reference early in the new year. It is intended that the primary focus will be on both the achievement of our decarbonisation goals and maintaining energy sustainability and security.

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