Wind Energy tweeted on Christmas Eve with a promising message – 2737MW of the energy being generated across Ireland is from wind. The previous record of 2683MW was simply blown away. At that instant 58% of Ireland’s electricity demand was being generated by wind, powering 1,779,050 Irish homes, or making over 68 million decent mugs of tea. Final figures showed that at one point on December 24, around 10.30 p.m., wind power constituted over 2,800MW.
2016 marked a year of crests and troughs for wind energy but these figures have come about thanks to an increase in wind capacity throughout the year. Following the news that Minister Naughten intended to extend the REFIT timelines, we are pleased to hear that the REFIT milestones extension has been confirmed. The extensions are as follows:
- the ‘connection’ date has been extended from 31 December 2017 to 31 December 2019; and
- the requirement to have a power purchase agreement in place has also been extended from 30 September 2018 to 31 March 2020.
With this extension and the news of a record breaking Christmas eve, all signs point towards 2017 and 2018 being big years for the wind energy industry. As the number one advisor to independent developers of on-shore windfarms, we are proud to be part of this surge in wind power.
The REFIT milestone extensions mentioned above will be of great help to developers across the country. Our 2020 targets still remain a very difficult challenge for us to meet and we need to continue to increase our wind energy generation if we want to be successful. Having said that, these recent developments are certainly a positive for us all.