Climate Emergency in Ireland

Climate change is a wide-ranging and far-reaching challenge. But the opportunities are endless. We can all play a very positive part in reducing our impact on the climate. The development of renewable energy is the foundation upon which effective climate action can be delivered.

It is clear that in order to deliver effective action on climate breakdown, we are embracing new ways of thinking and the public want renewable sources to power their homes, cars and businesses. At the moment, the majority of us still use fossil fuels to generate our electricity, heat our homes and run our cars, all of which release carbon into the environment.

However, people are now moving towards a low carbon solution. In 2020, 43% of our electricity came from renewable sources and in the most recent Climate Action Plan 2023, the country has a target to increase that to 80% by 2030.

Ireland has also committed to increasing its onshore wind capacity to 9GW by 2030.

Ireland’s electricity grid started out as a world leader in renewable energy with the construction and operation of the Ardnacrusha facility in the 1929. Our electricity demand has continued to grow over the years, and it is clear that our electricity generation system needs to revert to its roots in developing a clean, green renewable energy mix.

Wind energy helping to reach 2030 goal

Wind energy has the potential to produce more electricity every year than Ireland needs.

Just with the onshore wind farms we already have, wind energy in Ireland provides 34% of the electricity we use. Every time you switch on the TV or boil the kettle, a portion of that power is coming from wind turbines.

And that’s without all the energy we’re yet to harness from the wind that blows offshore. We have some of the best offshore wind resources in the world and over the rest of the decade, we need to build and connect a new generation of offshore wind farms to power Ireland.

As we harness more of that boundless wind energy and push fossil fuels off the electricity grid, the renewable electricity we generate will help other sectors reduce their emissions as well.

Electricity from wind energy will reduce our reliance on fossil-fuelled transport, as buses and trains are electrified and hundreds of thousands of new electric vehicles hit our roads.

Wind energy will power the heat pumps we employ in our homes and industries, replacing boilers and heaters that run on fossil fuels.

Across the economy, hitting our climate targets will mean replacing fossil fuel technologies with electric alternatives. And as electricity powers more and more of our daily life, we will need to build more wind farms.