Ireland set to become €8bn renewable energy hub

Ireland is poised to become an €8 billion ‘green energy’ hub on the back of a significant offshore windfarm project being planned for the north Irish Sea.

Irish-owned clean energy firms, Oriel Windfarm and Gaelectric have signed a memorandum of understanding to co-develop a new project — the North Irish Sea Array (NISA) – which has the potential to produce up to 870 megawatts of wind energy.

The two will commence the project with a 15mw demonstration project entailing an investment of €80m in a new R&D hub for offshore wind energy.

Up to 150 jobs could be created during the construction of the project, with room for 30 long-term jobs for the north-east region.

“This project represents the biggest step forward for the Irish offshore wind energy sector in the last 10 years. NISA will commence with a significant demonstration project which, by their nature, draw investment and attract collaborations with local universities and provide opportunities for local businesses,” said Oriel Windfarm managing director Brian Britton.

“Demonstration projects in the UK, Germany and Denmark have led to the development of full scale projects, leading to the creation of many thousands of jobs in those countries,” he said.

Gaelectric CEO, Brendan McGrath expressed confidence that the project will attract leading industry players to offshore Ireland.

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