“Leadership needed on energy transition and energy security”

Statement by the Irish Offshore Operators’ Association

The decommissioning of the Kinsale Head gas fields underlines the urgent need for the new Government to provide leadership on energy, with policies which meet international commitments on climate action while also ensuring we have the power for a vibrant economy, according to the Irish Offshore Operators’ Association (IOOA).

The representative body for companies licenced to explore for and produce gas and oil off the Irish coast says it is vital that any incoming Government gives recognition to the Ireland’s unique vulnerability on energy.

IOOA says policies and regulations are needed which encourage investors to repeat the success of Kinsale and the Corrib fields and prevent the Irish economy becoming reliant on energy imports via Britain.

Mandy Johnston, Chief Executive Officer of the association added:

Mandy Johnston, CEO of the Irish Offshore Operators’ Association

“Since the 1970s the Kinsale Head fields have powered Irish economic success. When they came on stream they transformed the energy landscape, cutting our dependence on higher emissions fuels as well as unreliable and costly imports.

Today we again face an energy challenge. The important and crucial role of gas during the future decades of transition to renewable energy has been recognised by Government. However with Kinsale now ending and the Corrib field past its peak we are in danger of becoming completely reliant on imported gas to provide energy during the transition.

Our energy transition and energy security will be vulnerable to global events. Gas will be imported via post-Brexit Britain, often from as far away as Qatar and Russia. The transport of gas over such great distances not only jeopardises jobs at home, it is also results in up to 30% higher greenhouse gas emissions.

What is needed now is a Government with policies which include clear regulations and guidelines so energy companies can repeat the success of Kinsale and Corrib, a commitment to encourage and develop new technologies such as Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) and the development of intensive energy conservation measures. Each of these will ensure Ireland can answer the climate challenge without jeopardising the economy, investment and jobs.”

ENDS

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