Onshore wind power key to climate goals and jobs, KPMG report says
Developing onshore wind power will be key to meeting Ireland’s climate goals and will translate into an additional 4,000 megawatts of electricity while employing 7,000 people by 2030, according to a KPMG report.
Achieving the onshore wind energy target in the government’s climate action plan will almost double the capacity of this source, generate € 2.7 billion in investment over the next decade and could be worth € 550 million. euros per year for the economy at this point, according to the Wind Energy Ireland (WEI) report concludes – it was released on Thursday at its annual conference.
It confirms that 5,100 people are employed in the sector, which is concentrated in rural Ireland. The onshore sector will be critical to decarbonization, he notes, as offshore wind begins to develop towards the end of the decade.
Wind farms pay more than 45 million euros in commercial tariffs to local authorities; a figure expected to double by 2030. In seven counties, wind farms account for more than 8 percent of the total commercial tariff budget – this figure rises to 22 percent in Leitrim and 15.5 percent in Tipperary.
“Communities can potentially benefit from up to € 25 million in annual community benefit payments as new wind farms are built,” he adds.
WEI Acting Managing Director Noel Cunniffe said the report “shows that if we meet the target set in the climate action plan, it will mean more jobs, more investment and more communities. stronger across the country. “
Russell Smyth, head of sustainable futures at KPMG, said the results underscored the crucial role of onshore wind in the economy.
“In addition to materially helping Ireland achieve its decarbonisation ambitions by 2030.. . the sector creates construction and operating jobs, contributes to local government and the treasury, and adds to Ireland’s overall economic output. “
Carbon dioxide emission
Irish wind farms are currently reducing CO2 emissions by 4 million tonnes per year, Cunniffe noted.
The delivery capacity, he said, was confirmed by audited figures from Eirgrid showing that 43% of last year’s electricity came from renewables – mostly wind power.
There was, however, a “pipeline challenge” to delivering large-scale projects and ensuring that they are able to feed into the grid. There is an urgent need to clarify wind power development guidelines, which must be science-based, and a regional approach to planning is needed to overcome inconsistencies, rather than relying on individual county development plans .
From a standing start, he believed, offshore wind should play a role in meeting the 2030 targets – 27 offshore projects are under development and are expected to initially deliver up to 5,000 MW by 2030.
Climate Minister Eamon Ryan told the conference that “now is the time to go offshore at scale and at high speed.” The maritime area planning bill was a top priority for the government and had to be in place this year to ensure that the first offshore auction can take place next year, he added.
He accepted the need to plan well and remove uncertainty over grid connection, so Ireland can leverage its competitive advantage overseas and minimize risk to investors.
Mr Ryan also confirmed that Ireland’s first five-year carbon budget was due by the summer.
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