Ireland Auctions 80 New Wind And Solar Projects

Highlights :

Chosen from among 130 renewable energy projects, the 80 new projects were awarded totaling 1 GW capacity.

Ireland recently auctioned 80 new wind and solar projects amounting to 1.9 GW. Chosen from among 130 renewable energy projects, the 80 new projects were awarded in Ireland’s latest Renewable Energy Support Scheme (RESS 2) auction. Submitted to the auction, 50 projects failed to qualify for state support in spite of totaling 998 MW of capacity. It represents an increase over RESS-1, in which 1.2 GW of capacity was awarded.

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The scheme is meant to aid the development of wind and solar electricity projects in Ireland. Every mega watt hour of electricity generated by renewables such as wind and solar can power around 400 average homes. SSE Renewables-owned Green Wind Energy (Wexford) Ltd received a contract for its 104 mega watt (MW) Yellow River wind farm, which the London-listed group bought after it got through planning in 2019. Amarenco, the solar developer chaired by former Bord Gáis chief executive, John Mullins, got contracts for several projects with a total capacity of more than 33MW through the auction.

Going from €104.15/MWh in RESS 1 to €116.41/MWh in RESS 2, the average price granted for community-based projects has also correspondingly increased. Solar power has once again led the pack, accounting for all but 11 projects that successfully applied for the pricing mechanism. PV projects that have provisionally won contracts include Soleire Renewables’ 120 MW Ballyroe, East Laois Solar Farm Limited’s 80 MW Loughteague and Joriclo’s 80 MW Gaskinstown. Soleire got backing for solar projects with a total capacity of 256.5 MW at Ballyroe, near Charleville in Co Cork and Erkina, close to Roscrea in Co Tipperary.

It replaced the old renewable feed-in tariff system, which simply guaranteed a set minimum price. Households and businesses pay for the scheme through a public service obligation levy on their electricity bills. However, current high power prices are likely to mean the levy will be set at zero later in the year. The final results of the auction will be published on June 15.

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