Ireland has seen substantial social change over the last decade and is now about to embark on a
revolution in solar energy. The country is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions significantly
and solar energy is part of the plan in a major way. In keeping with this new solar strategy, the Irish
government has set an aspirational target of producing up to 40% of its energy requirements via
renewable sources by 2020. In the context of existing energy sources, which include wind, biogas and
solar, wind has historically been the most popular source of energy; it currently produces over 75% of
renewable energy in Ireland. However, there is now a growing consensus to move away from wind as
the major source of power.
Unfortunately, the dependence on wind power has recently led to multiple planning objections and
social unrest in local communities which don’t want their natural views and rural scenery adversely
affected by windmill construction. As a result, Ireland is monitoring the example of other countries in
Europe, which have made significant strides in the development of solar energy. This is evidenced by
the government’s white paper titled ‘'Ireland's transition to a low carbon energy future.” This
government publication strongly supports the utilization of solar (PV) technology as part of the nation’s
strategic planning for renewable energy.
In addition, the advantage of solar energy in Ireland should not to be underestimated. Ireland
produces 70% of the radiation levels vis-a-vis the Cote D’Azur and has the same radiation levels as
northern France. If the correct policy framework and economic incentives are focused on this new solar
project, it could produce approximately 10% of renewable production by 2020. This will result in
500MW of power generation installed (ISEA). Moreover, solar energy, as a renewable energy provider
in Europe, has seen massive growth and is currently the fastest growing renewable energy sector. For
Solar PV produces 7% of the energy in Greece, Italy and Germany.
Solar PV also produces 3.5% of the energy for Europe as a whole.
Ireland is now perfectly positioned to take advantage of this evolving technology, and the Irish
Government is ready to push solar energy forward in the coming years. If the required supports are put
in place to encourage construction and operation, it could produce €2.5 billion in revenue between now
and 2030. Moreover, Irish landowners, especially in the farming communities, would gain a huge
opportunity to diversify into these new, ongoing revenue streams. This is the right time to think about
solar energy as a great source of power in Ireland’s future.
To learn more about solar and how best to work with these upcoming solar energy changes in Ireland,
please feel free to contact us in Accounting Pro at 061 518 264 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org –
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