Moneypoint power station in Clare will be transformed into a green energy hub, where a range of renewable technologies will be deployed over the next decade with the capacity to power 1.6m homes.
The announcement is a key part of ESB’s Brighter Future strategy, which it says will “contribute significantly” to achieving the Government’s target of a 51% reduction in emissions by 2030.
Under the plan, a floating offshore wind farm of 1,400MW will be developed off the coast of Clare and Kerry in two phases by the ESB and Norweigan energy company Equinor, formerly known as Statoil.
The first phase of the wind farm is expected to be delivered by 2028, with the second phase delivered early into the next decade.
"Subject to the appropriate consents being granted, the wind farm is expected to be in production within the next decade,” the company said in a statement.
Moneypoint, which is due to cease coal-burning by 2025, will also become a centre for the construction and assembly of floating wind turbines, the ESB added.
The ESB said it had already commenced work on transforming Moneypoint into a green energy hub, breaking ground on a new €50m Sustainable System Support facility in the coming weeks.
The new facility will use a “synchronous compensator”, which will allow the ESB to continue its activity without burning fossil fuels, and which will be the biggest of its kind in the world, the ESB added.
The plans also include investment in a green hydrogen production, storage and generation facility at Moneypoint towards the end of the decade.
This zero-carbon fuel would be used for power generation, heavy goods vehicles in the transport sector and to help decarbonise a wide range of industries such as pharmaceuticals, electronics and cement manufacturing, the company said.
Pat O’Doherty, ESB chief executive, said the multi-billion euro project was anchored in its ambition to lead the transition to a low-carbon energy future, powered by clean electricity.
“The transformation of Moneypoint into a green energy hub will be a major step in achieving this and will bring huge benefits to the Mid-West and beyond. We have long signalled our intention to cease burning coal at Moneypoint,” he said.
Jim Dollard, ESB executive director for generation and trading, said the announcement was a “significant milestone” in ESB’s low-carbon journey.
“Moneypoint has played a critical role in the country’s energy supply for almost 40 years. We are proud that it will continue to have a crucial role in Ireland’s energy future with many benefits for the local community and wider society,” he added.