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Dublin: 8 °C Tuesday 31 March, 2020
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Global Wind Day: Wind meeting 2% more electricty demand than last year

Members of the public have been granted access to a number of wind farms to mark the day.

DOZENS OF WIND farms have been opened to the public to mark Global Wind Day.

Several events, coordinated by the Irish Wind Energy Association (IWEA), allow all members of the public to access these sites at designated times.

Figures obtained from EirGrid.ie show that power from wind energy has met an average of 21.5% of the electricity demands in Ireland in the first half of this year, up just over 2.1% from the same period in 2013.

It met over half the total system demand, which varied from 1750MW to 4462MW, roughly 4% of the time.

The majority of these periods were during the night when system demand is at its lowest

For example, a peak of 65.7% was achieved at just after 5am on one morning in February.

An extra 350MW of capacity is expected to be added to the grid this year.

“Clear focus and momentum”

Kenneth Matthews, CEO of the IWEA, said good progress has been made with wind energy so far this year, “but we cannot take this for granted and must ensure that the clear focus and momentum remains on achieving our 2020 targets and planning towards 2030 and beyond”.

“In over 20 years as an industry in Ireland we have always encouraged open and honest discussion and providing access to wind farms right around the country is an open invitation to those interested in learning more about the benefits of sustainable local energy to come along and see it for themselves,” Matthews added.

Fuel imports

Earlier this week, Wind Aware called into question figures published by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland which stated Ireland had saved €177 million in fuel imports due to wind energy.

“Iin order to prop up this uneconomical and unsustainable form of power and peat the consumer is now to pay €328 million through subsidisation,” a statement from the group said.

“It doesn’t take a maths genius to work out that this is a net loss to Irish society of €151 million,” they added.

The total capacity of all wind farms in Ireland stood at 2011MW  at the start of this year.

Read: These five graphs dig into the figures behind wind energy in Ireland >

Gilmore: Not viable to export wind energy to Britain… right now >

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Nicky Ryan

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